Chelsea sanction fans after racist abuse of Raheem Sterling

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Chelsea have sanctioned six individuals following the racist abuse of Manchester City’s Raheem Sterling at Stamford Bridge back in December 2018.

One supporter has been banned permanently from Stamford Bridge for using racially abusive language, while the other five have received bans between one and two years for abusive language and threatening and aggressive behavior.

The Blues say they “delayed reaching its decision in these cases in order to ensure that it did not prejudice the related police investigation” and confirmed that the police were not going to “initiate any criminal prosecutions” against the individuals.

These sanctions are a result of a club investigation as Chelsea spoke with the individuals concerned, reviewed video evidence, interviewed potential witnesses and obtained expert opinions from two lip reading professionals

Chelsea also said that they “appreciate that emotions can run high during matches” but that “in this case the behavior of all six individuals crossed the line of what is acceptable.”

The west London side went on to say that “a permanent exclusion was the appropriate sanction” for the individual charged with using racially abusive language.

“Chelsea Football Club finds all forms of discriminatory behaviour abhorrent and we will continue to operate a zero tolerance approach to any incidents of racism,” read the club statement.

Below is a list of the sanctions in full from Chelsea:

  • One individual has been permanently excluded from Stamford Bridge for the use of racially abusive language and threatening and aggressive behaviour. Prior to making its decision, the club noted the decision of the Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) not to charge this individual with a criminal offence. While the club respects the decision of the CPS, the question that it had to determine was not whether a criminal offence had been committed, but rather whether the individual acted in breach of the ticketing terms and conditions. In this regard, the club operates to the civil standard of proof, which is entirely different to the criminal standard. In reaching its decision, the club took into account the denial made by the individual as well as a range of other evidence, including video evidence and evidence from two lip reading experts – both of whom advised that the individual had used words that are racially abusive.
  • Five individuals have been temporarily excluded from attending Stamford Bridge for periods of between one and two years for the use of abusive language and threatening and aggressive behaviour. Individuals receiving the shorter exclusion did so on the basis that they have provided undertakings about their future behaviour.