Football fans walk free after Tube brawl

Two groups of football fans walked free from court today despite admitting that they drunkenly brawled on the Tube.

The Manchester United and Millwall fans clashed on the train and platform at Euston Underground station in north London on November 8 2008 after attending separate matches.



But all four men in the dock walked free after prosecutors accepted pleas to the lesser offence of threatening behaviour, as opposed to affray.



Judge Peter Testar told Southwark Crown Court in London: "They may well have been guilty of actual violence which would have attracted the appropriate sentences.



"But I'm going to sentence them for the offences for which they have actually been convicted."



He said the men were in "football fan mode" when the violence broke out.



All were ordered to carry out 60 hours of unpaid work, with one - Michele Carey, who kicked another man as he lay on the platform - also receiving a three-month jail sentence, suspended for two years.



Mark Gadsden, prosecuting, said five members of the Carey family, who were all Manchester United fans, were chanting football songs, swaying and swearing in loud voices on the train as it pulled into Euston Underground station.



Millwall fans Dean Maxwell and Dean West - who had been drinking since the previous evening - were about to get on the same train shortly after 7pm.



There was an altercation in the doorway, either because the Careys thought the two men were rival Arsenal fans or because the Careys mocked the others - and the two groups "erupted into violence", the court heard.



"A large fight broke out," Mr Gadsden said.



"Then the whole group piled on to the platform and the fighting continued."



The fight then broke up and some members of the Carey family returned to the train before they all "piled off the train again and the fighting continued".



"It must have been a very frightening incident as far as any ordinary members of the public who were travelling or on the platform must have been concerned," Mr Gadsden said.



Michele Carey, 24, and Kieran Carey, 26, of Third Avenue, Luton, denied affray but admitted the lesser offence of threatening behaviour along with West, 21, of Bicknor Road, Maidstone, Kent, and Maxwell, 25, of Oakridge Road, Downham, Bromley.



The court heard that West had previous convictions for being drunk at a sporting event in 2006, for criminal damage in 2008 and for a pitch invasion on February 22 this year. He was already the subject of a three-year football banning order.



Mr Gadsden told the court he would accept those pleas on the condition that the others in the dock - Stephen, 51, Liam, 20, and Ryan Carey, 29, all of Third Avenue, Luton - agreed to be bound over in the sum of £3,500 each to keep the peace and good behaviour for a period of 12 months.

Start your day with The Independent, sign up for daily news emails
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

Day In a Page

HIV pill: Scientists hail discovery of 'game-changer' that cuts the risk of infection among gay men by 86%

Scientists hail daily pill that protects against HIV infection

Breakthrough in battle against global scourge – but will the NHS pay for it?
How we must adjust our lifestyles to nature: Welcome to the 'Anthropocene', the human epoch

Time to play God

Welcome to the 'Anthropocene', the human epoch where we may need to redefine nature itself
MacGyver returns, but with a difference: Handyman hero of classic 1980s TV series to be recast as a woman

MacGyver returns, but with a difference

Handyman hero of classic 1980s TV series to be recast as a woman
Tunnel renaissance: Why cities are hiding roads down in the ground

Tunnel renaissance

Why cities are hiding roads underground
'Backstreet Boys - Show 'Em What You're Made Of': An affectionate look at five middle-aged men

Boys to men

The Backstreet Boys might be middle-aged, married and have dodgy knees, but a heartfelt documentary reveals they’re not going gently into pop’s good night
Crufts 2015: Should foreign dogs be allowed to compete?

Crufts 2015

Should foreign dogs be allowed to compete?
10 best projectors

How to make your home cinema more cinematic: 10 best projectors

Want to recreate the big-screen experience in your sitting room? IndyBest sizes up gadgets to form your film-watching
Manchester City 1 Barcelona 2 player ratings: Luis Suarez? Lionel Messi? Joe Hart? Who was the star man?

Manchester City vs Barcelona player ratings

Luis Suarez? Lionel Messi? Joe Hart? Who was the star man at the Etihad?
Arsenal vs Monaco: Monaco - the making of Gunners' manager Arsene Wenger

Monaco: the making of Wenger

Jack Pitt-Brooke speaks to former players and learns the Frenchman’s man-management has always been one of his best skills
Cricket World Cup 2015: Chris Gayle - the West Indies' enigma lives up to his reputation

Chris Gayle: The West Indies' enigma

Some said the game's eternal rebel was washed up. As ever, he proved he writes the scripts by producing a blistering World Cup innings
In Ukraine a dark world of hybrid warfare and murky loyalties prevails

In Ukraine a dark world of hybrid warfare

This war in the shadows has been going on since the fall of Mr Yanukovych
'Birdman' and 'Bullets Over Broadway': Homage or plagiarism?

Homage or plagiarism?

'Birdman' shares much DNA with Woody Allen's 'Bullets Over Broadway'
Broadchurch ends as damp squib not even David Tennant can revive

A damp squib not even David Tennant can revive

Broadchurch, Series 2 finale, review
A Koi carp breeding pond, wall-mounted iPads and a bathroom with a 'wellness' shower: inside the mansion of Germany's 'Bishop of Bling'

Inside the mansion of Germany's 'Bishop of Bling'

A Koi carp breeding pond, wall-mounted iPads and a bathroom with a 'wellness' shower