UK

Chelsea fans sought over London station racist chants

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Media captionBritish Transport Police are examining CCTV footage as they investigate the incident at St Pancras International Station, as Simon Clemison reports

Police are investigating racist chanting at St Pancras station by men thought to be Chelsea fans returning from a Champions League match in Paris.

It comes after an incident of alleged racism by Chelsea supporters on the Paris Metro, when footage showed a black man being pushed from a train.

The chanting in London happened on Wednesday evening, the day after the club's 1-1 draw with Paris St-Germain.

British Transport Police say anyone with information should contact them.

Chelsea FC has already barred five fans from attending Stamford Bridge following the earlier incident.

It took place at Richelieu-Drouot station in the centre of the French capital on Tuesday ahead of the Paris St-Germain match.

Club 'disgusted'

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Image caption Chelsea drew 1-1 with Burnley at Stamford Bridge in the club's first game since the incident in Paris
Image copyright AP
Image caption Five people have been barred by Chelsea from Stamford Bridge in connection with the incident
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Image caption A number of Chelsea fans held banners at Stamford Bridge promoting racial tolerance
Image copyright Reuters
Image caption John Terry said in Chelsea's pre-match programme that what happened in Paris was "unacceptable"

Manager Jose Mourinho has said he was "ashamed" by the alleged racism.

In his matchday programme notes for Saturday's match against Burnley, which is also the club's annual "Game for Equality", he said it was a time to "celebrate this club's diversity".

He said it was an opportunity to mark "the work we do to show that football is for everyone and that Chelsea is dedicated to tackling all forms of discrimination".

The club drew 1-1 at home to Burnley in what was their first game since the incident in Paris.

Chelsea captain John Terry, also writing in the club's programme, said: "Football is a sport for everyone, that is one of the main reasons why we love it, and what happened on the Paris Metro was unacceptable."

Terry was found guilty by the Football Association of racially abusing QPR defender Anton Ferdinand in 2012, and given a four-match ban and a £220,000 fine.

But the regulatory commission in the case also stressed that Terry was "not a racist".

The Metropolitan Police have released CCTV images of three men they are looking for in connection with Tuesday's incident.

Officers have since said believe they know the identity of one of the men.

Image copyright Met police
Image caption CCTV shows the three men sought over an earlier incident, which happened on the Paris Metro on Tuesday

Superintendent Gill Murray of the BTP said of the new allegations: "The racist chanting was reported by a member of the public who was disgusted by the behaviour of the men who had travelled on the 18:40 service from Paris Gare du Nord.

"The men shouted as they walked through the station having alighted from the train a short time earlier.

"If you travelled on the train from Paris or were at the station and have information which can assist our investigation I would urge you to get in touch as a matter of urgency."

She said more needed to be done to "publicly condemn" such behaviour, adding that BTP is working with football clubs to tackle the issue.

"It's clear that unfortunately there is still a minority who think it is acceptable to behave in such an abhorrent manner," added Supt Murray.

'Humiliation'

The alleged victim of the Metro incident, who has since been identified as 33-year-old Souleymane S, said the fans "should be locked up".

Speaking to BBC Radio 5 live's Drive on Friday he said: "I felt truly wounded to the bottom of my heart that I really couldn't believe it.

"We're in 2015, aren't we, and we're in France. We're in a civilised country and when you are in a civilised country there are certain things you can't do.

"For me, it's a humiliation. I was humiliated in my country. I was humiliated in front of my family, humiliated in front of my mother and father."

A tweet from the Twitter account of the French presidential palace said Francois Hollande had spoken to Souleymane S and "gave him his full support following the odious racist aggression he suffered".

A group of people can be heard singing "we're racist, we're racist and that's the way we like it" in an amateur video taken at the Paris Metro.

Chelsea FC has said it will ban the five suspended fans from attending Stamford Bridge for life if there is sufficient evidence of their involvement in that incident.

A spokesman said the club was writing to Souleymane to "apologise unreservedly" and invite him to attend a game as their guest.

But according to French newspaper Le Parisien, Souleymane said that while he was "touched by the invitation" he was "not in the right frame of mind to go to a stadium at the moment".

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