Thursday, 10 April 2014

Turkish international Kazim-Richards guilty over homophobic gesture


Turkish international and former premier footballer Colin Kazim-Richards has been found guilty of making a homophobic gesture. The offence took place last year on the pitch during a game against Brighton and Hove Albion when Kazim-Richards was playing for Blackburn Rovers.

Brighton supporters complained that Kazim-Richards had made offensive gestures to them during the match last February. He was seen semi-pulling down his shorts and putting his left arm on his bottom as he simulated a sex act deemed to be homophobic in nature. Season ticket holder Darren Hastings told the hearing at Brighton Magistrates court that the gesture was “utterly disgusting”.

The British Turkish Cypriot footballer, 27, tried to defend himself saying he was "having a bit of banter" with fans who has been verbally abusing him. However, Brighton magistrates upheld the complaints and convicted the player of using abusive or insulting behaviour. The player, who attended the hearing, was fined £750 and ordered to pay a £75 victim surcharge and £620 costs.

Sussex Police said it was the first conviction of its type involving allegations of homophobia against a professional footballer. 

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