Three charged over 'yid' chants at Tottenham Hotspur games

Ravel Morrison The word, meaning Jew, was allegedly used at matches against FC Sheriff and West Ham United

Three men have been charged with racial aggravation in connection with chanting the word "yid" at two football matches.

Gary Whybrow, 31, of west London, Sam Parsons, 24, of Amersham, and Peter Ditchman, 52, of Bishop's Stortford, were charged with using threatening, abusive or insulting words.

The word, meaning Jew, was allegedly used at Tottenham Hotspur matches against FC Sheriff and West Ham United.

The three men are due before Hendon Magistrates' Court on 4 February.

What is the Y-Word?

Screenshot of BBC Religion and Ethics feature "The Y-word: Should Tottenham fans be allowed to use it?"
  • The word 'yid' means Jew in Yiddish
  • In itself, it does not have any negative connotations
  • It is thought it was used as an insult in the 20th Century, especially around the time of Oswald Mosley and the Black Shirts in the 1930s
  • Some Spurs fans say they have reclaimed the word, turning it into a badge of honour and deflecting the offensive meaning attached to it by some opposing fans

"The alleged offences were racially aggravated within the terms of the Crime and Disorder Act 1998", the Metropolitan Police said.

Mr Ditchman is also charged with possession of cocaine on 6 October, the same day as the Tottenham Hotspur v West Ham United match.

In a statement, the Tottenham Hotspur Supporters Trust (THST) said it was "saddened, but certainly not surprised, at today's decision by the Crown Prosecution Service to deem the use of the Y-word in any context as a prosecutable offence".

"Since the first Spurs fan was arrested at White Hart Lane on 6 October, THST has worked closely with our legal team to establish a defence to these charges, which will now be tested in a court of law.

"It remains our firm belief that, when used in a footballing context by Tottenham Hotspur supporters, there is no intent or desire to offend any member of the Jewish community."

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