Three football fans jailed over Grassmarket riot

THREE football fans have been jailed for their part in a mass riot in the Grassmarket, with banning orders of up to ten years handed out.

The Grassmarket in Edinburgh. Three football fans have been jailed and given football banning orders for their part in disorder that took place in April. Picture: Greg Macvean

The trouble flared up between rival fans ahead of the Ramsden’s Cup Final clash between Rangers and Raith Rovers at Easter Road on April 6 last year.

The atmosphere turned ugly about an hour before kick off, leading to police closing the road briefly with 13 people detained.

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Witnesses had reported seeing “running battles” between the police and supporters, while pictures appeared to show dozens of officers surrounding, or “kettling” a section of the Rangers support at the West End of the square.

Speaking at the time, one witness said the fighting had spilled out of a Grassmarket bar and said bottles had been thrown by some supporters.

Christopher Kloumann, 41, from Renfrew, was handed a sentence of 160 days imprisonment and a Football Banning Order lasting 10 years.

Greg Buchanan, 41, from Glasgow, was sentenced to 100 days in prison and was banned from football for three years.

Mark John Murray, 24, from Glasgow was also given 100 days imprisonment and a three-year banning order while Alister Galbraith, 29, from Paisley was order to perform 180 hours, to be completed within six months.

A Football Banning Order prevents those under it from attending regulated football matches throughout the whole of the United Kingdom.

Emma White, football liaison prosecutor for the east of Scotland, said: “Prosecutors will continue to work with the police in tackling football-related disorder and offensive behaviour. The rival groups of fans in this case were clearly intent on causing trouble and I hope that the outcome today sends out a strong message that such violent and disorderly conduct is completely unacceptable and will not be tolerated.”