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Chelsea fans fined for racist abuse of man on Paris metro

Chelsea fans fined for racist abuse of man on Paris metro

Categories: Latest News

Friday January 06 2017

Four Chelsea football fans have been sentenced after they were filmed racially abusing a man in Paris during a Champions League match fixture in the French capital two years ago. The incident, which happened in February 2015, saw the football fans chant “we are racist, we are racist, and that’s the way we like it” at a black man while preventing him from boarding an underground train.

Chelsea fans Richard Barklie, 52, William Simpson, 27 Joshua Parsons, 22, and James Fairbairn, 25 all faced trial for racial abuse with Barklie and Simpson facing additional charges of committing racist violence.

The Metro newspaper reported that a French court found the four men guilty of racial abuse and ordered the men to pay the victim, Souleymane Sylla, 10,000 Euros in compensation. The court handed Barklie and Simpson 12-month suspended sentences on charges of committing racist violence and making chants of a racist nature and Parsons and Fairbairn suspended sentences of eight months and six months respectively on similar charges.

Parsons, Fairbairn and Barklie have already been banned from football stadiums in Britain, after a Stratford magistrates’ court issued banning orders against the Chelsea fans in July 2015 excluding them from attending matches for five years. A fourth man, Jordan Munday, 20, was also banned for three years.

The incident in Paris was recorded by a British passenger, Paul Nolan, and widely reported in the British and French media at the time.

The video showed the Mauritania born commuter, Souleymane Sylla, repeatedly trying to squeeze on to a busy train only to be forcefully shoved out of the door and back onto the platform. He was violently pushed off the carriage amid racist chanting by the Chelsea fans. CCTV footage at the Metro station also recorded the incident. A French police investigation was launched in February 2015 with the cooperation of the Metropolitan police in London.

Sylla was so traumatised by the incident that he stopped work and did not take the Métro for six months afterwards, telling journalists: “I’ve been waiting for this trial for almost two years. I hope it will allow me to turn the page.”


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