001/LFC

No charge for Liverpool fan accused of racially abusing player

12/03/2012

A Liverpool fan who was accused of racially abusing an Oldham Athletic FC player during an FA cup match at Anfield will not be charged with an offence.

Jane Roden, Head of the Complex Casework Unit, CPS Mersey-Cheshire, said: "I have considered a file of evidence submitted by Merseyside Police relating to an incident which occurred on 6th January 2012, when Liverpool and Oldham Athletic met in the FA Cup.

"In the 79th minute of the game, Oldham Athletic player Tom Adeyemi alleged that a fan had shouted a racially abusive comment at him after he retrieved the ball from near the crowd. Mr Adeyemi reported the incident to the referee. The referee notified the fourth official, who then notified the police.

"No action was taken until after the final whistle. Mr Adeyemi spoke to officers after the match and gave a statement to the police on 8th January.

"A suspect was identified and arrested. During interview he admitted shouting at the player, but denied it was of a racial nature. He was released on police bail pending a decision from the CPS.

"I have viewed the extensive CCTV footage available, which has been enhanced to isolate and improve the sound. I have also read statements from Mr Adeyemi, the match officials and the many independent witnesses to the incident, many of whom came forward after the game to offer their evidence after hearing media reports of the incident.

"There are two important factors I have relied upon when making my decision: the enhanced CCTV footage and the high proportion of witness statements which tend to support the suspects version of events.

"On the balance of all of the evidence, I have therefore concluded that there is insufficient evidence to bring any criminal charges in this case and I have advised Merseyside Police of my decision."

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