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Sat 17 Jan 2009 01:03 PM

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UK minister stands by Mido in racism row

Authorities move to enforce ban on Newcastle fan for racial taunts on player.

British security minister Lord Alan West has called for tougher sanctions against a Newcastle fan convicted of racially abusing Middlesbrough striker Mido who is from Egypt.

Barry Hutchinson, 49, pleaded guilty to an offence of racist or obscene chanting directed at Mido - Ahmed Hossam Hussein Abdelhamid - during Newcastle's goalless draw at Middlesbrough last November.

But he escaped a banning order and was just handed a £270 ($397) fine.

"The magistrates' court decision is both disappointing and surprising," the minister was quoted as saying by Journal Live.

Last month, Middlesbrough and English Football Association spokesmen expressed their dismay that the fan wasn't given a stronger punishment.

Admiral West, a security advisor to British prime minister Gordon Brown, has revealed that several parties are considering making further inquiries about the matter.

"The local Race Harassment Case Group, which is chaired by the Crown Prosecution Service and includes police, BME (black and minority ethnic) representatives and safer community representatives from the local authorities, the North East Refugee Service and others, will review the case and take further action if appropriate," he said.

"The law is clear that a banning order should be imposed against a person convicted of a football- related offence," Admiral West added.

Egyptin striker Mido has been linked with a move to Newcastle in the January transfer window.

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Don McAninch 11 years ago

In this time of high unemployment and overpopulation, I do think it is imperative to start eliminating immigration. Both legal and illegal immigration should be reduced to zero.

Ibrahim 11 years ago

Don, if we follow your logic then we should send the Brits back to the UK.