Football fan Mark Harding has reportedly been told to pay £150 compensation and perform 60 hours of unpaid community service for telling a supporter of a rival football team to “stick your head in the oven like the Jew you are” on Twitter.
The 48-year-old from Walsall claimed that his tweets constituted “football banter”. His lawyer, Tina Patel, told the court: “He was involved in banter that escalated out of control. He is totally ashamed by all of this.” Harding had apparently watched his beloved West Ham United Football Club being defeated by Tottenham Hotspur Football Club, and had taken to drinking, during which Tottenham supporters taunted him online.
Harding admitted sending offensive communications and was given an 18-month suspended jail sentence JP Harvey Simons at Hendon Magistrates’ Court. Sentencing Harding, Simmons said that his tweets were “hurtful and obnoxious”.