Sunday, March 26, 2023

Historic Decision Announced For Hate Crime Against Brentford Star Ivan Toney

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Abhinab Ghosh
A 26-year-old sports writer and an aspiring football coach who has road-tripped across the Scottish Highlands, but has never been to Wales. Sucker for cliff-hangers and catchy riffs. Known to be a grunger and not to be a stranger.

A historic decision was recently announced for the hate crime against Brentford star Ivan Toney. The West London club have confirmed on their official website that the man, who abused Toney on social media, has been given a three-year ban from all stadiums in the United Kingdom.

On October 14, 2022, Antonio Neill sent a racist message to the English striker who opted to share a screenshot of the abuse on his Instagram account. Soon after, Northumbria Police supported by the Metropolitan Police initiated a full investigation of the incident.

Neill’s racist message was categorized as a hate crime and was traced back to a suspect residing in the North Shields Area of Newcastle.

On January 25, Antonio Neill pleaded guilty to sending an offensive message to Toney after he appeared in front of magistrates in Newcastle. He was given a suspended four-month jail sentence and received a three-year ban from all stadiums in the country.

Superintendent Scott Cowie of the Northumbria Police said,

“Discrimination has absolutely no place in any society, whether out in our communities or online.

“I am therefore delighted that the seriousness of Neill’s offence has been reflected with this banning order, which forbids him from attending any regulated football in the United Kingdom.

Ivan Toney
BRENTFORD, ENGLAND – SEPTEMBER 25: Ivan Toney of Brentford during the Premier League match between Brentford and Liverpool at Brentford Community Stadium on September 25, 2021 in Brentford, England. (Photo by Clive Rose/Getty Images)
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“I hope this reinforces our commitment to taking action against anybody who commits a hate crime – it will not be tolerated and we will do all we can to put perpetrators before the courts.

“I would like to thank everyone who played their part in this particular case, including the team of officers who worked tirelessly to secure justice as well as our colleagues at the Metropolitan Police, the UK Football Policing Unit and the Premier League.”

Ivan Toney: Season At A Glance

Toney is having an impressive campaign at Brentford as he has managed to put in a run of productive displays as the focal point of their attack. He has banged in 16 goals and picked up four assists in 25 matches for the Bees this season across all competitions.

Hopefully, Toney would now be able to put this incident behind him and continue to shine for Thomas Frank’s team on the field as the fixtures come thick and fast in Premier League football.

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