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Middlesbrough football fans banned for life after Koran was used as confetti at away match

Love-Boro-Hate-Racism

Middlesbrough football fans banned for life after Koran was used as confetti at away match

Boro have banned three fans for life for their part in a Koran ripping incident at an away match.

Six supporters were originally given temporary bans from The Riverside after the 2-2 draw at Birmingham City in December. West Midlands Police investigated claims pages of the Islamic text had been thrown in the air and three fans were later charged.

The club was unable to confirm which supporters it has banned for life.

A spokesman told The Gazette: “Middlesbrough Football Club has banned three fans for life following an incident at Birmingham City’s St Andrew’s Stadium on December 7 2013 in which a copy of the Koran was ripped up. Another two supporters have been banned for 12 months and a sixth fan remains suspended while he remains out of the country.”

Julie Phillips, 50, and Gemma Parkin, 18, from Middlesbrough, were found guilty of committing a religiously aggravated public order offence by magistrates in May. Phillips, of Kenmore Road, Netherfields, and Parkin, of Kimberley Drive, Pallister Park, were both fined and ordered to pay costs. Boro season ticket holder Mark Stephenson, of Napoleon Drive, Shrewsbury, pleaded guilty to causing racial or religiously aggravated harassment, alarm or distress and was fined £235.

The three were not issued with football banning orders by the court which would have prevented them from entering any ground in the country, but Boro have now taken their own action after reviewing evidence provided by Birmingham City.

Phillips, a Middlesbrough Council employee, told the court she only found out the book was the Koran when she was questioned by police after stewards saw what was happening. “I was mortified,” she said. “Very ashamed and disgusted in myself. It was just a book of some sort, I can’t remember if the cover was on. It was just white paper.”

Parkin said she took the Koran into St Andrew’s after she was handed it at Birmingham’s Frankfurt Christmas Market. She claimed not to have looked at the book, saying she had no idea it was the Koran. She said Stephenson, a purchasing manager, took the book from her bag before it was “turned into confetti”. “Everyone else was ripping it up so I just ripped it,” Parkin told the court.

Magistrates described her account as “unbelievable”.

A Birmingham steward told the court he heard chants about Muslims and the Koran as the book was passed around and ripped up. He later followed Phillips and Parkin and pointed them out to police officers after the match ended.

During his court case, Stephenson said he was “shocked and appalled” by his actions.

In the aftermath of the incident, Boro fans’ group Red Faction organised a Love Boro Hate Racism march.

Boro are next due to visit St Andrew’s on February 14.

Evening Gazette, 24 July 2014

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  • Friend of Bosnia

    Unfortunately for some people and in some societies it does mean it. They think he who shouts the loudest is right. Pretty stupid in my opinion but there you have it.

  • That’s not some new thing which has Happened to England. Some form of blasphemy law has been in place there for centuries. The BBC used to (maybe still does) have to pay a fine whenever certain Monty Python films were broadcast.

  • abc

    I think they should be punished.

  • EyeOnFashion

    llishi and omar
    This may help you understand the PROBLEM for those that need it spelled out!

    Maybe you don’t burn Bibles but it has been done! where are you that you are not informed correctly? Omar same with you!

    perhaps Joan can put it in a perspective you can understand?

    http://www.ijreview.com/2014/07/161141-theyre-insane-watch-joan-rivers-epic-rant-critics-israeli-response-gaza-attack/

    https://www.facebook.com/PaulWilbur/photos/a.10150100846562777.275978.35790692776/10152541270417777/?type=1&theater

  • Omar_the_Egyptian

    Muslims don’t burn bibles you prick.

  • mindy1

    YELLING DOES NOT MEAN YOU ARE RIGHT!

  • EyeOnFashion

    But it’s ok to BURN the BIBLE, AMERICAN FLAG, JEWISH FLAG.
    It’s ok to DESTROY PROPERTY, LOOT, CAUSE MAYHEM, DISRUPT BUSINESSES?

    FIRE MISSILES INTO ISRAEL and NOT HAVE CONSEQUENCES?

    How long would AMERICA put up with MEXICO FIRING MISSILES INTO TEXAS?
    What if those MISSILES FELL INTO A PALESTINIAN/MUSLIM neighborhood here in Texas? Do you THINK those Palestinians or Muslims would stand by and do NOTHING before they DEMANDED AMERICA PROTECT THEM?

  • Truly commendable.

  • mindy1

    Doing things like that is just so immature

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