Fan guilty of aiming racist insults at QPR and Everton stars

15:01 21 January 2013

Queens Park Rangers

Queens Park Rangers's Ji-Sung Park. Photo: Nigel French/PA

PA Archive/Press Association Images

A man has been found guilty of racially abusing two Premier League footballers in front of his wife, children and grandson.

Everton fan William Blything hurled the racist abuse at QPR’s Korean captain Ji-Sung Park and Everton forward Victor Anichebe as the teams drew 1-1 at Loftus Road on October 21.

Blything, of Moss Pits Lane in Wavertree, Liverpool, denied a single count of racially-aggravated intentional harassment, alarm or distress but was found guilty at West London Magistrates’ Court today.

Passing verdict, District Judge Jeremy Coleman said the defendant would not face a custodial penalty when he is sentenced on February 11.

He said: “If the players had heard these comments - and there is no evidence that they did - it would have caused them upset.”

The 42-year-old was arrested after he was reported to stewards by two fellow Evertonians as he watched the game with his wife, 16-year-old daughter, 11-year-old son and three-year-old grandson.

Giving evidence in court today, Everton fan Neil Jordan said he was “outraged” by the abuse and tweeted a picture of Blything, before reporting him to stewards.

Mr Jordan said he first noticed Blything as he made one of his children cry by telling him to “man up” when QPR scored a goal.

He later heard the defendant insult Anichebe, who is originally from Nigeria.

Mr Jordan said: “At that point I realised that it wasn’t an isolated incident.

“There was clearly some intent to target that player because, in my opinion, of the colour of his skin, coupled with general agitation and abuse aimed at the home end and abuse towards another opposition player.”

Louise Thomas, prosecuting, told the court that Mr Jordan was left “shaking and distraught” by the abuse.

Also giving evidence, Everton fan John Murmame said he heard Blything shout an insult in reference to Park.

“I go to a lot of football games but this was exceptional,” he said.

The match saw QPR defender Anton Ferdinand and other team-mates refuse to don a T-shirt in support of anti-racism campaign Kick It Out.

Last October, Chelsea captain John Terry was given a four-month suspension and £220,000 fine for racially abusing Ferdinand during a match in October 2011.

District Judge Coleman said he took into account that children had witnessed the abuse.

“This took place at a football match and we have a major problem as far as racist behaviour at football is concerned,” he added.

Defending himself, Blything admitted he had used “foul language” but said it had not been racial in nature.

Originally from Southampton, he argued that both witnesses - who were at the game separately - had described the offender as having a Liverpool accent, whereas he does not.

Wearing a grey suit and blue shirt, Blything posed for pictures with an Everton scarf after the hearing.

Speaking outside court, he said: “I have never used that kind of language in my life - never have done and never will.

“I was brought up in a black community and my 17-year-old daughter has a coloured boyfriend.

“There is something wrong with the justice system as far as I am concerned.

Related articles

Sign up for our news alerts today!

Our editors' picks for the day's top news delivered to your inbox or phone.

Sign up for email alerts Sign up for mobile alerts
1
2 3 4 5 6
7

Latest Crime news

Friday, April 24, 2015
Police want to talk to this woman about the incident

Police have released an image of a woman they want to speak to after a Muslim woman wearing a head scarf was racially abused on a Piccadilly line train.

Friday, April 24, 2015
Peter Mussett sexually assaulted a 12-year-old girl on the DLR

A 32-year-old man carried out an ‘incredibly frightening’ sexual assault on a 12-year-old girl travelling alone on the DLR.

Friday, April 24, 2015
Police have released a CCTV image of a cyclist believed to have knocked a woman to the ground.

CCTV images of a cyclist accused of forcefully knocking a woman over in Bermondsey before speeding off have been released by police.

Thursday, April 23, 2015
Ambrose Ball has been missing since January 24

Police have recovered a body from the River Lea and believe it may be that of Ambrose Ball, who went missing in January after crashing his car.

Wednesday, April 22, 2015
Scotland Yard would like to speak to this man in connection with the attack [Photo by Metropolitan Police]

A 13-year-old girl was sexually attacked on a Bromley-bound bus, police have revealed.

Wednesday, April 22, 2015
The man was attacked until he got off the train at King's Cross station (Photo by Oli Scarff/Getty Images)

A Victoria Line passenger was subjected to a vile racist tirade after asking a man not to spit on the Underground.

What is this?

Near You Now

Don't Miss...

We have censored part of this image

Keith Fraser, the UKIP prospective parliamentary candidate for Hackney North and Stoke Newington has apologised after retweeting an Islamophobic cartoon which looks similar to Charlie Hebdo’s depictions of the Prophet yesterday morning.