Man fined for wearing t-shirt that mocked the Hillsborough disaster

CourtsBy Sunday World
Paul Grange outside court today
Paul Grange outside court today

A 50-year-old man arrested for wearing a T-shirt mocking the 96 Liverpool fans who died in the Hillsborough disaster has been fined £600 after admitting a public order offence.

Paul Grange told Worcester Magistrates' Court he was ashamed of what he had done and had deservedly lost his home, job, friends and relationship.

Grange - who pleaded guilty to a charge of displaying abusive writing likely to cause distress - was also ordered to pay a £60 victim surcharge and £135 in costs.

Representing himself in court, Grange told magistrates he now realised the hurt caused by a slogan on the T-shirt, which described the 1989 Hillsborough tragedy as "God's way of helping" a pest control firm.

Images of the shirt, which Grange openly wore in a pub beer garden on Sunday May 29, caused widespread anger on social media.

After hearing a victim impact statement from a woman whose brother died at Hillsborough, Grange, of Lower Wick, Worcester, told magistrates: "Hearing that statement, it's hit home, the personal effect of it.

"It (the T-shirt) was only supposed to be between friends. And until it went public I didn't realise how badly it affected people.

"Because of my own actions, I have lost my home, my job, my friends, my family and relationship. And it's deserved - I don't think it's any less than I deserve."