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Wolves fans banned for three years over trouble at Birmingham City derby

Sport | Published:

A group of Wolves supporters caught throwing plastic bottles, lighters, a broken seat and a coin during a Birmingham City derby have been banned from attending matches for three years.

The six men were each given a football banning order following the Championship league fixture on February 24, which was labelled as one of the 'worst occasions' of crowd behaviour.

The disorder broke out when former Wolves player David Davis, who now plays for Blues, celebrated the 2-1 win in front of fans at Molineux, Walsall Magistrates' Court heard.

The group, who had attended the match separately, then began to lob items towards the pitch and Blues fans from Molineux's Sir Jack Hayward stand.

More than 80 seats inside the stadium were broken and dozens of coins thrown during the game.

Paul Deakin, aged 54, from Charles Street, Willenhall, Iain Hills, 20, from Clifton Street, Sedgley, Alex Price, 26, from Pale Street, Dudley, Jamie Smith, 32, from Park Lane, Wolverhampton, George White, 18, from Warash Close, Wolverhampton and Luke Elsmore, 30, from Burton Old Road East, Staffordshire, all pleaded guilty to throwing a missile at the spectators area.

Deakin and Smith threw a plastic bottle, Price and White threw a lighter, Elsmore lobbed a chair and Hills hurled a coin, the court heard.

Miss Val Hart, prosecuting, said: "There was a crowd of more than 25,000 and 2,000 away supporters sat in the lower tier of this stand.

"It was a high-risk match with 150 police officers working. It was one of the worst occasions of in-crowd behaviour during a match.

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"Mr Deakin said he retaliated by throwing a bottle after one was thrown at him drenching him in beer.

"Price said he had just 'blew his lid' and others claimed it was an intense game and in the heat of the moment."

As well as the banning order, all men had to pay a £100 fine, £135 in costs and a £30 victim surcharge.

Mike Tanney, defending five of the men, said: "All of them regret what they have done and I feel that there should be an allowance for the context in which this happened.

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"The genesis of this was not the fault of anyone in the crowd, although their behaviour was wrong."

Andrew Brocklehurst, defending White, said: "This was an isolated incident and he is not out there causing any trouble nor is he part of any risk group."

Four of the men had no previous convictions.

"The majority were also season ticket holders.

Deputy District Judge Timothy Gascoyne, said: "I look at this as a group action. One starts throwing stuff and then everyone else joins in.

"People were pushing forward and back and that was clearly deliberate."

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