Terry cleared of racial abuse

2012-07-13 14:07

London – Former England captain John Terry was found not guilty of racially abusing fellow player Anton Ferdinand after a five-day case which cast a spotlight on racism in soccer and could have had a huge impact on his career.

The 31-year-old Chelsea captain, who earns a reported £150 000 (about R1.9 million) a week, was in Westminster Magistrates’ Court to hear chief magistrate Howard Riddle read his verdict.

The high-profile case, focusing on foul language from both players during a Premier League game last October, triggered the resignation in February of England’s Italian manager Fabio Capello after the FA decided to strip Terry of the captain’s armband for Euro 2012.

Terry had denied committing a racially aggravated public order offence when he had an expletive-littered exchange with Ferdinand on the field of play when Chelsea visited QPR’s Loftus Road ground.

Although, in evidence, he admitted using the highly offensive words, he maintained he was sarcastically repeating what Ferdinand mistakenly thought he had said.

During cross-examination, Ferdinand agreed he had sworn at players in the past and been on the receiving end himself.

He said he was angry at Terry seeking a penalty call and there had been some barging on the pitch.

He had also alluded to an alleged affair between the Chelsea player and the ex-girlfriend of former England team mate Wayne Bridge.

Terry had been stripped of the England captaincy before the 2010 World Cup following those allegations.

Allegations of racial abuse cast a shadow over the Premier League last season, with Liverpool’s Luis Suarez banned for eight matches for abusing Manchester United’s Patrice Evra during another Premier League match last October.

That case was dealt with by the English FA rather than going to court.

“The very serious allegation at the heart of this case was one of racial abuse. It was our view that this was not “banter” on the football pitch and that the allegation should be judged by a court,” said Alison Saunders, Chief Crown Prosecutor for London.

“The Chief Magistrate agreed that Mr Terry had a case to answer, but having heard all of the evidence he acquitted Mr Terry of a racially aggravated offence. That is justice being done and we respect the Chief Magistrate’s decision.”

Join the conversation!

24.com encourages commentary submitted via MyNews24. Contributions of 200 words or more will be considered for publication.

We reserve editorial discretion to decide what will be published.
Read our comments policy for guidelines on contributions.

24.com publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
0 comments
Comments have been closed for this article.

Inside News24

 
/News

Book flights

Compare, Book, Fly

Traffic Alerts
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.
 
English
Afrikaans
isiZulu

Hello 

Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.


Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.

Settings

Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.




Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.