| 17.1°C Dublin

'outrageously disgusting' Youth threatened with jail after ‘disgusting’ racist message sent to Ireland footballer

Republic of Ireland Under-21 international Tyreik Wright was on loan at Walsall when he received the sickening message in February

Close

A teenager who sent an ‘outrageously disgusting’ racist message to footballer Tyreik Wright on social media has been sentenced to a referral order – and warned that any breach will result in him being locked up (Yui Mok/PA)

A teenager who sent an ‘outrageously disgusting’ racist message to footballer Tyreik Wright on social media has been sentenced to a referral order – and warned that any breach will result in him being locked up (Yui Mok/PA)

A teenager who sent an ‘outrageously disgusting’ racist message to footballer Tyreik Wright on social media has been sentenced to a referral order – and warned that any breach will result in him being locked up (Yui Mok/PA)

A teenager who sent an “outrageously disgusting” racist message to an Aston Villa footballer via Instagram has been sentenced to a referral order – and told that any breach will result in him being locked up.

The 17-year-old, who admitted sending an offensive message to Republic of Ireland Under-21 international Tyreik Wright, was warned to co-operate with a youth offending team or face a four-month custodial sentence.

A youth court sitting at Birmingham Magistrates’ Court was told that Wright, currently on loan at Salford City, was playing for Walsall when he received the highly offensive message in February.

Close

Tyreik Wright (L) in action for the Republic of Ireland against the Netherlands (Mike Egerton/PA)

Tyreik Wright (L) in action for the Republic of Ireland against the Netherlands (Mike Egerton/PA)

Tyreik Wright (L) in action for the Republic of Ireland against the Netherlands (Mike Egerton/PA)

Prosecutor Simon Brownsey told the hearing on Thursday that 20-year-old Wright is proud of his black Caribbean heritage and had been left sickened and sad after receiving abusive messages.

The court was told that an offensive post by another individual is still under investigation by a police force outside the West Midlands area.

Mr Brownsey said of the messages: “Language such as this is utterly abhorrent.

“This impacts black footballers as a whole and it impacts our society as a whole.”

In a statement read into the court record by Mr Brownsey, Wright said: “I immediately felt sick to my stomach at what I had read.

“I found all the messages extremely offensive. Due to the nature of the messages I had to read the messages back twice, I was in so much shock.”

The teenager, who is himself of Caribbean descent, sat with his head bowed for much of the hearing as his solicitor said the prosecution had had a “sobering” effect on him.

The youth was also ordered to pay Wright £500 in compensation, £100 in costs and a £22 victim surcharge.

Sunday World Newsletter

Sign up for the latest news and updates

This field is required This field is required

Close

The 17-year-old was sentenced at Birmingham Magistrates’ Court (Jacob King/PA)

The 17-year-old was sentenced at Birmingham Magistrates’ Court (Jacob King/PA)

The 17-year-old was sentenced at Birmingham Magistrates’ Court (Jacob King/PA)

Passing sentence, District Judge Shamim Qureshi noted that the boy, who is from the North East of England, has a Caribbean family background and is “capable of understanding how a victim of this feels”.

He told the teenager: “This is an outrageously disgusting offence committed by you.

“It’s not even posting a few words or one sentence, it’s a continuous stream of abuse.”

The youth had the benefit of not being named due to his age, the judge said, adding: “Because you are under 18, the law forbids publication of your name.

“Once you turn 18 there are no second chances.”

Passing a 12-month referral order requiring the teenager to work with a youth offending team, the judge told him: “If there is a breach (of the order) I will get the case back before me – I promise you I will sentence you to custody for four months.”

Explaining a separate restraining order, the judge said: “For the next 12 months, starting from today, you are not to post any comments on social media in relation to any footballer.”

Download the Sunday World app

Now download the free app for all the latest Sunday World News, Crime, Irish Showbiz and Sport. Available on Apple and Android devices


Privacy