Football fans could be banned from games if they make fun of tragedies such as the Hillsborough disaster, the Munich plane crash or the Bradford City fire.
Updated Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) guidelines aim to tackle tragedy-related abuse, which is when fans chant or gesture offensive messages about disasters or accidents involving players or players. fans.
The guidelines, which help prosecutors make legal decisions on cases, reaffirm that abuses related to the tragedy can be considered a breach of public order.
The move was backed by the chief executives of the Football Association, Premier League and English Football League.
The guidelines also explain how lawyers can apply for football restraining orders, which can apply to domestic and international matches.
These may prevent fans from attending matches and impose other restrictions such as movement to certain areas during tournaments or allowing entry into pubs during matches.
Douglas Mackay of the CPS said: “A small minority of so-called fans are both damaging the sport’s reputation and, more importantly, this offense has a devastating impact on the families of tragedy victims and the communities closely related to these events.
As the new season kicks off, the CPS, Police, Clubs, Players Associations and the Premier League, English Football League, Women’s Super League, Women’s Championship, National Football League and National Organization referees aim to explain the impact of this behavior and the punishment fans could face if they commit a crime.
Chief Constable Mark Roberts, of the National Council of Police Chiefs, said the organization was working closely with the CPS and praised efforts to tackle the “senseless and vicious chanting that unfortunately a minority of supporters fall into. deliver”.
FA chief executive Mark Bullingham described the abuse linked to the tragedy as “completely unacceptable”, adding: “This behavior is deeply offensive and can have a lasting effect on families, friends and communities who have been devastatingly affected by these events”.
Man sentenced for offensive Hillsborough tweets
Fan pleads guilty for Hillsborough attacking shirt in FA Cup final
Premier League chief executive Richard Masters and English Football League chief executive Trevor Birch both echoed those sentiments.
The past few months have seen several successful lawsuits.
In June, Zakir Hussain28, from Ilford, was given a 14-week prison sentence suspended for a year after posting numerous hateful tweets, including one saying he wanted to defecate on the grave of a Hillsborough victim, on a site of social network in April 2020.
In the same month, a Manchester United fan Jacques White33, receives a four-year football ban after admitting to wearing a football shirt at Wembley Stadium which made an offensive reference to the Hillsborough disaster.
He had pleaded guilty to posting threatening or abusive writing likely to cause harassment, alarm or distress at Willesden Magistrates’ Court in north-west London.
Tottenham fan Kieron Darlow, 25, has also been banned from attending football matches for three years after being found guilty of mocking the Hillsborough disaster during a match at Anfield between Liverpool and the Spurs.
Ninety-seven football fans died following a lightning strike during an FA Cup semi-final match between Liverpool and Nottingham Forest at Sheffield’s Hillsborough Stadium on April 15, 1989.
Seven Manchester United footballers were among 21 people killed when their plane crashed in Munich in February 1958.
In May 1985, 56 football fans died after a fire destroyed the main stand during a football match between Bradford City and Lincoln City.