Saturday 24 February 2018

Ferdinand stalker jailed for 10 weeks

Dean Gray in London

A woman who stalked footballer Rio Ferdinand and his family has been jailed for 10 weeks and given a 10-year restraining order.

Susanne Ibru (38) was convicted of harassment of the Manchester United and England star last month.

She was living in Peckham, south London, when she made a number of 400-mile round trips to Mr Ferdinand's home in Alderley Edge, Cheshire, in 2010.

Ibru was convicted in her absence last month after she fled the court. However, she was arrested the following day and brought back.

The court heard that Ibru spat in the face of the arresting officer when she was detained.

Ibru pleaded guilty yesterday to assaulting the officer. At Crewe magistrates' court, Judge Nicholas Sanders said police officers "did not deserve to be spat on" for performing their duties.

Ibru's restraining order bans her from entering the village of Alderley Edge, approaching Mr Ferdinand or his wife, or attending any match or event at which the footballer is present.

When sentencing, Judge Sanders said he was "concerned" by Ibru's behaviour during her time in custody.

He said: "The pre-sentence report describes you as living in a fantasy world, unable to interpret social situations."

The defendant said she would be appealing against her sentence and, as she was led away, added: "I stick two fingers up at you."

During the trial, Ferdinand told the court how Ibru left him angry and fearing for his family's safety.

The court was told that she appeared outside his home on three occasions and demanded to speak with him.

Simon Leech, defending Ibru, who has previous convictions for assault, public order offences and possessing an offensive weapon, described his client as an "accomplished athlete".

The court also heard she "bitterly regretted" struggling with the arresting officers.

Irish Independent

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