Knuckleduster football fan faces jail

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A FOOTBALL fan who was caught with a knuckleduster at a Scottish Premier League match was yesterday warned he faces jail.

Tom McFarlane was found with the weapon in the stands at Dundee FC’s Dens Park stadium after trouble flared between home and visiting Hibs fans. Words were exchanged between fans after half time when police were forced to move in to stop the trouble.

McFarlane, 24, of Edinburgh, was spotted trying to flee the ground but was stopped and searched by officers who found the knuckleduster concealed in his jacket. The Hibs fan was told he could now face a jail term. Prosecutors have also asked for a football banning order to prevent him from attending any future matches.

Fiscal depute Isma Mukhtar told Dundee Sheriff Court: “There was an incident in the stadium itself where Dundee supporters and Hibernian supporters became involved in exchanges. The accused, a travelling Hibs fan, became involved and he was seen to go towards the exits of the stadium.

“He was searched by officers and at a knuckleduster was recovered from his jacket pocket.

McFarlane pleaded guilty to possessing an offensive weapon at Dens Park, Dundee, on 17 November last year. His lawyer asked for bail ahead of sentencing next month. Sheriff Derek O’Carroll continued the case for social work background reports to a date in March.

McFarlane was granted bail and banned from entering Dundee except for court dates and banned from attending from any Scottish football match.

Kevin Watt, 24, was also arrested following disturbances at the game. Watt is accused of being in possession of a knife and possessing drugs.

Watt, 24, of Pilton Park, Edinburgh, appeared in private on petition at Dundee Sheriff Court on the Monday following the match. He made no plea or declaration during the brief hearing.