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Celtic v Rangers policing attacked by Labour MSP

Police surround a section of fans after flares are set off in the stands during the Glasgow Cup final. Picture: SNS

Police surround a section of fans after flares are set off in the stands during the Glasgow Cup final. Picture: SNS

A LABOUR MSP has hit out at police over their handling of the fan trouble during the Glasgow Cup Final between Rangers and Celtic under-17s on Monday night.

Three arrests were made following the game at Celtic Park, for a fireworks offence, an alleged breach of the peace, and possession of a bottle - which is not permitted inside football stadiums.

Photos taken inside the stadium showed multiple flares and smoke bombs in use, as well as damage to stadium furniture.

Graeme Pearson, the former director-general of the Scottish Crime and Drug Enforcement Agency, told the Daily Record that police should have arrested more people on the night rather than waiting to review CCTV.

Pearson, Labour MSP for South Scotland, said: “The game was marred by the actions of the few.

“Given this is the second year running an Old Firm youth game has been blighted by fan trouble, it would appear that the offensive behaviour laws passed by Kenny MacAskill have made little impact.

“Rather than scan CCTV and wait months to arrest people for singing offensive songs, a better approach would be to go in and arrest the people lighting flares and ripping up seats.”

The game was attended by around 8,000 fans, with Celtic’s youngsters winning 1-0.

A spokesman for Rangers told the Scottish Sun: “Fans who are identified as being responsible for this behaviour will be firmly dealt with.”

 

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