Humza Yousaf: Pair who racially abused Yousaf handed non-custodial sentences

The abuse happened during the SNP leadership contest
First Minister Humza Yousaf (Photo by Jeff J Mitchell/Getty Images)First Minister Humza Yousaf (Photo by Jeff J Mitchell/Getty Images)
First Minister Humza Yousaf (Photo by Jeff J Mitchell/Getty Images)

Two people who admitted racially abusing First Minister Humza Yousaf and hurling offensive remarks at other SNP politicians have been warned they face jail if they do not comply with their sentences.

Tracie Currie, 36, and Carl O’Brien, 26, were handed a community payback and restriction of liberty order respectively when they faced Dundee Sheriff Court on Thursday.

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The pair pleaded guilty in August to repeatedly making racist remarks about Mr Yousaf and other comments about religion on Seagate, Dundee, on February 24.

They also directed verbal abuse towards local SNP MSP Shona Robison, who is now the Deputy First Minister, and SNP MP Chris Law at the party’s parliamentary office on Old Glamis Road on the same day.

Court papers said O’Brien also repeatedly phoned the Dundee SNP parliamentary office and made offensive remarks the previous day, on February 23.

Nominations for the SNP leadership contest closed on February 24, and Mr Yousaf was one of three candidates.

Currie was ordered to carry out 180 hours of unpaid work, reduced from 240 for her guilty plea.

O’Brien was ordered to stay at his home address between the hours of 7am and 7pm for 12 months, reduced from 18 for his guilty plea.

Passing sentence, Sheriff Alastair Carmichael told the pair they had committed “very serious offences” that were in the “custodial zone”.

He said: “Your targets appeared to be police officers, Ukrainians and Muslims.

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“MPs and MSPs are democratically elected representatives of the people.

“We may like them, we may not like them. They have important work to do. They should be able to do so without fear.”

Background reports said Currie suffered with emotional regulation as a result of drug and alcohol use as well as childhood trauma.

Defending O’Brien, solicitor Paul Bennett told the court he “deeply regretted” his actions and had “turned his life around” by obtaining employment.