Wednesday 21 February 2018

Police to probe Stan Collymore hate mail

Stan Collymore
Stan Collymore

Former footballer Stan Collymore has said he is taking legal advice after being inundated with a stream of offensive and racist messages on social media.

The ex-England striker, whose clubs included Liverpool, Aston Villa and Nottingham Forest, spent part of Tuesday retweeting what he considered several abusive messages from users.

The football pundit and broadcaster, who often uses the social media platform to highlight prejudice and mental health issues, posted several "screen grab" images of messages sent to his account.

He told his near-half a million followers: "To those who continue the 'bants' today, and are enjoying their jolly japes, a few pics coming up especially for you. Enjoy court."

Collymore, who rose to prominence as a footballer in the 1990s, also hit out at Twitter's legal teams as "not fit for purpose".

He later added: "Taking advice from QC as to legality of UK soc media sites not enforcing age verification/hate speech rules & their legal responsibilities."

Staffordshire Police confirmed they are investigating alleged criminal behaviour in relation to offensive, racist messages sent via Twitter to Collymore, after the radio presenter contacted them on Monday night.

Officers said they have already secured copies of the messages and will be "undertaking a detailed investigation", working closely with colleagues at the Crown Prosecution Service.

Chief Inspector Carl Ratcliffe, commander of Cannock Chase local policing team, said: "It's everyone's role to treat each other with respect. It's our role to investigate complaints of criminal behaviour and where appropriate take action.

"When we become aware of complaints about potential criminal offences, we gather evidence to allow the CPS to make a decision on whether to charge or not."

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