Update: No criminal charges fo...

Sport

Update: No criminal charges for racist flying of banner over Etihad

Richie McCormack
Richie McCormack

10:00 23 Jun 2020


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Lancashire Police claim that there was no criminal offence in the flying of a racist banner over the Etihad Stadium on Monday night. 

A banner bearing the words 'white lives matter Burnley' was seen in the sky ahead of Manchester City's 5-0 win over Burnley in the Premier League.

There has been widespread condemnation of the incident, not least from Burnley Football Club.

Captain Ben Mee told Sky Sports that he and the squad were "ashamed", "embarrassed" and "upset" by display of the banner.

It's been seen as a direct attack on the work done by the Premier League to support the Black Lives Matter movement.

Burnley say last night they will work as a club to help authorities identify the individuals responsible.

They will also be issued with life bans from Turf Moor.

Lancashire Police Chief Supt. Russ Procter said on Tuesday night, "Today Lancashire Constabulary has been in liaison with Greater Manchester Police, the Aviation Authority and the Crown Prosecution Service regards the 'White Lives Matter' banner that was flown over the Etihad Stadium last night.

"After assessing all the information available surrounding this incident we have concluded that there are no criminal offences that have been disclosed at this time.

"We will continue to work with our partners at the football club and within the local authority."

Blackpool Airport has suspended all banner-towing operations from the airport.

It's believed the plane carrying the far right message originated from Blackpool Airport.

Their Airport Manager Stephen Smith said in a statement, "Due to the nature of the activity, banners are not checked before take-off and the content is at the operator’s discretion."

Smith adds that, "Civil Aviation Authority has been notified. Blackpool Airport are investigating the banner operator in question and further action will be taken by the Board tomorrow."


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