Belfast Telegraph

PPS considering file on three Northern Ireland fans in 'we hate Catholics' video

A still image from the video.
A still image from the video.

The Public Prosecution Service is considering whether or not to prosecute three Northern Ireland fans who were filmed singing a sectarian song in a Belfast pub, it has emerged.

In March, a 20-second video surfaced showing a number of people in replica Northern Ireland shirts singing "We hate Catholics, we hate Roman Catholics" to the tune of I Think We're Alone Now by Tiffany.

It was filmed in a bar on March 24 after Northern Ireland's 2-1 win over Belarus in a Euro 2020 qualifier at Windsor Park.

Castlederg-based Killen Rangers Football Club issued an apology over the vile singing and promised to take action if "deemed appropriate".

In April, police revealed several people had voluntarily attended Musgrave Police Station to be questioned about the footage.

It has now emerged the PPS is considering whether or not to prosecute three individuals, the Irish News reports.

"The PPS has received a file from the PSNI in relation to three individuals investigated for potential offences of acts intending to or likely to stir up hatred or arouse fear contrary to article 9 of the Public Order (NI) Order 1987," a spokeswoman said.

"This file is under consideration and a decision will issue in due course."

After the video came to light, footage emerged on social media showing a man ringing up a business in the Castlederg area believed to be associated with one of the people filmed.

The caller can be heard making obscene threats and highly offensive sectarian remarks to an employee, before saying "up the Ra" and hanging up.

Ulster Unionist councillor Derek Hussey claimed the family and friends of those in the sectarian song video had faced "vile and evil" online trolling and businesses in the area were subjected to "threats and intimidation".

The news comes after police last week said "no offences" were committed in a video shot on a Tyrone GAA team bus that appeared to show someone shouting a sectarian remark as a band parade passed the coach.

During the footage an individual can be heard making reference to a "pile of f****** huns" as accordion band members - mainly teenage girls - pass the stopped bus.

Players on the bus were also filmed singing rebel songs, including Come Out Ye Black And Tans, as they passed the band parade in the village of Aughnacloy.

Tyrone GAA manager, Mickey Harte, issued a statement after the incident apologising to "anyone who has been offended by the unacceptable behaviour of some of the panel on Saturday evening".

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