October 17, 2011

Man jailed after posting anti-Celtic Facebook comments

by Jan Harris

Stephen Birrell, who posted abusive comments on a Facebook page called “Neil Lennon Should be Banned” has been jailed for eight months after a trial at Glasgow Sheriff Court.

Sheriff Bull Totten said he wanted to out “a clear message to deter others”.

Birrell’s sectarian comments were posted earlier this year, shortly after he was released early from a 12-month custodial sentence.

Shortly before a Celtic and Rangers match on 3 March he posted “Hope they (Celtic fans) all die. Simple. Catholic scumbags ha ha.”

On 4 March he posted: “Proud to hate Fenian tattie farmers. Simple ha ha.”

A few days later he wrote: “They’re all ploughing the fields the dirty scumbags.”

His anti-Catholic campaign continued with abusive comments against the Pope.

As well as a jail sentence, Birrell was banned from attending football matches for five years.

Sentencing Birrell, the judge made it clear that using Facebook and other communications technology to spread abuse would not be tolerated.

Earlier this month Celtic manager Neil Lennon said he would consider his position as Celtic manager unless he turns the club’s results around.

However, despite lagging 3-0 behind to Kilmarnock on Saturday, Celtic fought back and the game ended in a draw with Celtic scoring three goals in just six minutes.

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