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Millwall-supporting father and son handed ban over tragedy chanting at Leicester game

Peter Brooks, 48, and Freddie Brooks, 18, were filmed making helicopter gestures to Leicester fans

Pa Sports Staff
Wednesday 28 February 2024 10:38 GMT
General view of The Den before the Sky Bet Championship match between Millwall and Luton Town
General view of The Den before the Sky Bet Championship match between Millwall and Luton Town (Getty Images)

A father and son have been convicted of tragedy chanting during a match between Millwall and Leicester earlier this year.

Peter Brooks, 48, and Freddie Brooks, 18, who are both Millwall fans, pleaded guilty to the offence at Bromley Magistrates’ Court last week.

The pair were filmed making helicopter gestures and pointing at a passing helicopter before laughing during an FA Cup match on January 6.

The Metropolitan Police said in a statement it was “clearly” a reference to the helicopter crash in 2018 that killed Leicester’s owner Vichai Srivaddhanaprabha and four others.

Peter and Freddie Brooks were given three-year Football Banning Orders and ordered to pay costs and a victim surcharge.

A statue of former Leicester City chairman Vichai Srivaddhanaprabha outside the King Power Stadium (Nick Potts/PA) (PA Archive)

Tragedy chanting was made a public order offence last August and DC Phil Dickinson from the Met Police’s Football Investigations Team said: “These convictions demonstrate the zero tolerance approach we are taking to those who partake in so-called ‘tragedy chanting’.

“While such incidents might previously have been viewed as simply being in poor taste, they are now rightly being recognised for what they are – vile offences which cause upset and outrage.

“We are familiar with fans taunting their opponents at football matches, but this is generally done and taken in good humour and without offence. This incident crossed the line of what is acceptable. It was quite simply a hate crime.”

In November last year The Premier League joined forces with former Hillsborough Family Support Group chair Margaret Aspinall to highlight the pain and upset that tragedy abuse can cause.

Aspinall, whose 18-year-old son James was one of the 97 people who lost their lives at the Hillsborough disaster in April 1989, participated in a video to explain the hurt caused by tragedy chanting and urged people to report any incidents.

An in-classroom lesson is to be made available to more than 18,000 primary schools and 60,000 teachers in England and Wales and outline to children the significant distress such abuse creates.

Liverpool published Aspinall’s comments and details of the in-classroom lesson, which will be made available as part of the Premier League Primary Stars programme, on their club website.

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