Manchester City supporter found guilty of racially abusing Manchester United players handed lifetime ban

Manchester City hand lifetime ban to Anthony Burke; 42-year-old found guilty at Tameside Magistrates' Court of making racist gesture towards Manchester United players; incident occurred at Etihad Stadium in December 2019

Manchester City (PA)

Manchester City have banned a supporter for life after he was found guilty of racially abusing Manchester United players in 2019.

Anthony Burke, 42, was found guilty during a trial at Tameside Magistrates' Court on Wednesday.

He was handed a three-year football banning order, preventing him from attending any matches in the UK.

The order also stops him from going within a mile of any ground at which City are playing for four hours before and after the game.

In addition, Mr Burke must not enter any city in which England are playing for eight hours before and after kick-off.

He was also given a £500 fine, and was ordered to pay a £50 victim surcharge and £300 costs to the Crown Prosecution Service.

Following Mr Burke's guilty verdict, City confirmed they would proceed with the lifetime ban.

The offending gesture was made during City's 2-1 defeat to United at the Etihad Stadium on December 7, 2019.

On Thursday, Detective Constable Susan Muldowney of Greater Manchester Police said: "The Manchester derby is a fixture that usually shows the best of Manchester but that night Anthony Burke appalled the city and the wider football community.

"No member of society should face such abuse wherever they are, especially when at their place of work - and this applies for anyone, whether they are a professional sports player or otherwise.

"With fans hopefully continuing to return to stadiums in the coming weeks and months, this conviction is a reminder to anyone who thinks of engaging in such intolerable abuse that we will work robustly to prosecute perpetrators of hate crime and bring them to some justice."

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