Three-year stadium ban for racist

A 24-year-old man has been handed a three-year stadi­um ban from every stadi­um in the UK for racially abusing Brentford striker, Ivan Toney.

Antonio Neill, who sent the racist message to Toney over social media on October 14 last year, has also been handed a four-month sentence suspended for two years.

Toney shared the abuse he re­ceived on his Instagram account, sparking a police investigation which found the suspect in Blyth.

Neill pleaded guilty to sending an offensive message at Newcastle Magistrates’ Court in January be­fore being sentenced on Monday.

Brentford and Northumber­land Police are describing this as a “landmark ruling” because it is “the first of its kind to be issued under the Police, Crime, Sentenc­ing and Courts Act 2022.”

“It is significant, but I think it needs explaining that landmark ruling bit because we have seen a lot of cases of football fans getting banning orders for racially abusing players online.

“What’s different here is that the man found guilty here is a Newcastle fan and he abused Toney, a Brentford player, after the game between Brentford and Brighton.

“Northumbria Police say this is different from all the other cases, because the racist abuse wasn’t specifically connected to the football match.

“The Newcastle fan was watching the game, but the unique factor here – and what’s different to all the other cases – is that the police felt this was not racist abuse directly related to football and yet the punishment is a foot­ball banning order.” —Sky Sports

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