Football fan handed banning order for sectarian singing

British Transport police attended the incident. Picture: Lisa Ferguson.
British Transport police attended the incident. Picture: Lisa Ferguson.
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A fan has been banned from every football stadium in Scotland after admitting chanting sectarian abuse while returning from a Celtic friendly in England.

Brendan McDonnagh pleaded guilty to a charge in of breaching the Offensive Behaviour at Football Act and was also fined during an appearance at Edinburgh Sheriff Court.

McDonnagh was returning from the match between Sunderland and Celtic on July 29 of this year when passengers saw him behaving in an anti-social manner, including chanting loud songs they suspected were sectarian in nature.

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Police boarded the train and instructed the 28-year-old to calm down and not repeat his actions, but as the train travelled from Edinburgh to Glasgow he sang sectarian songs.

British Transport Police officers detain McDonnagh at Glasgow Central.

Inspector Gary Brown from British Transport Police, said: “We simply do not tolerate this behaviour on the rail network and I welcome the sentence handed down on Friday. Chanting sectarian songs is a hate crime and we take every allegation extremely seriously.

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“Very sadly, our officers are called to similar incidents such as this each weekend. Drunken football fans, causing disorder on trains by being abusive to other passengers or at times, being violent. Behaviour such as this is inexcusable and we will always apply for a Football Banning Order to be imposed.

“McDonnagh is now banned from going to see his team – or any other – for one year. I hope this serves as a deterrent to other like-minded troublemakers about the potential consequences of their actions.”