Charges under the 'Offensive Behaviour at Football and Threatening Communications (Scotland) act 2012' in 2015-16

Analysis of charges reported under the act to provide information about the nature of the charges, the accused and the victims of incidents, reported under offensive behaviour at football and threatening communications legislation.


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2 Including where charges were added as a result of expressing hatred, or stirring up hatred, against people based on their membership, or presumed membership of a religious group, a social or cultural group with a perceived religious affiliation, or a group defined by reference to colour, race, nationality (including citizenship), ethic or national origins, sexual orientation, transgender identity or disability.

3 Although this report includes charges reported during 1 st April 2015 to 31 st March 2016, incidents may have occurred before this date.

4 The affiliation may have been apparent from the accused being located in a 'home' or 'away' section of a football stadium - the accused admitting to their club affiliation, having a match ticket or item of clothing identified with their team (e.g. a scarf or replica football shirt) were means of identifying the accused's affiliation when an incident occurred somewhere other than a football ground.

5 For the purposes of this analysis, hateful references to colour, race, nationality (including citizenship), and ethnic or national origins were included as racial hatred.

6 An updated method of classification was used in 2013-14: gesturing people to fight was categorised as 'generally offensive' rather than 'gesture' as it was more closely aligned with other charges that were classified as generally offensive. Therefore the generally offensive and gesture categories noted in the 2013-14, 2014-15 and 2015-16 are not directly comparable with 2012-13.

7 See:


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