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Prison For Two After Newcastle Legend Abused

6 years ago
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Two men have been jailed after Newcastle legend Andy Cole was racially abused.

The former United striker was on a flight from Dublin to Manchester when two men decided it would be clever to give Cole racial abuse.

The two were 28 year old Lee Byrne and Gregory Horan who is 26, both from Dublin.

The pair were both drunk (zero excuse in my eyes) and now have time to sober up with Judge Mushtaq Khokar handing down a 20 week sentence to Byrne and a 10 week one to Horan.

Horan was given the lesser sentence after admitting being drunk on an aircraft, while Byrne was handed the longer one to a racially aggravated public order offence.

As well as kicking the chairs of female passengers in front, the two men also left the cabin crew feeling ‘threatened’.

After the pair recognised Andy Cole who was sitting nearby, they turned their attention on him, with amongst the comments aimed by Byrne at the ex-Newcastle striker, “where I’m from it is politically correct to call you Mr Blackman.”

Cole told them to leave it but Byrne continued with his abuse, calling the former footballer a ‘spook’, eventually Cole was forced to change seats as the comments continued.

The prosecution said that Andy Cole had been ‘angry and upset’ and that he’d felt ‘extremely humiliated and degraded’.

The ex-Newcastle player adding;

“I have been victim of racism before and won’t tolerate this abuse in any capacity.

I’m worried that if nothing happens or changes, the next generation of young people, including my own children, will suffer that same discrimination and this is unacceptable to me.”

The flight had a happy ending though as both of the clowns were arrested on landing and have of course now been handed prison sentences.

Cole has also played a prominent role in campaigning against racism in sport, having being part of the Kick It Out team.

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