Footballer given suspended sentence for racist messages


A semi-professional footballer has been given a suspended sentence after pleading guilty to posting racist material on social media for a second time.

Liverpool Magistrates' Court heard that striker Shaun Tuck, 28, of Mollington Avenue, Norris Green, posted racist comments after he'd been assaulted on a night out.

Just last year, the former Warrington FC and Witton Albion player, was given a 12 week jail term after he used Twitter to call for mosques in the UK to be "gassed out or bombed".

His comments then followed the death in Woolwich of soldier Lee Rigby by two men claiming to be Islamic extremists.

A member of the public spotted Tuck's most recent Facebook posting and reported it to the police.

The player was charged with sending a message via social media that was "grossly offensive or of an indecent or menacing nature".

Tuck defended himself at the hearing at Liverpool Magistrates' Court and expressed his remorse. He said he had struggled with on-going grief following the death of his parents.

He also told the court he had sought help with his problems.

Tuck was given a 22-week prison sentence, suspended for 18 months and an 18 month supervision order which would include completing the "Promoting Human Dignity" programme.

He was also ordered to perform 120 hours unpaid work in the community, pay a victim surcharge of £80 and costs of £85.

Andrew Page, an Associate Prosecutor with the Crown Prosecution Service Mersey Cheshire, said: "Some people think they can say what they like on social media and that there's no come back.

"That is not the case. Posting offensive, menacing or indecent images is a crime and we and the police will pursue those responsible.

"Tuck has shown remorse and says he is getting help with issues in his life. We hope this and the sentence handed down by the courts will make him change his ways.

"We also hope that this sends out the message to those with similar inclinations that society won't tolerate this behaviour."