Edinburgh, Fife & East Scotland

Ten Rangers fans in court over incident at football match

Livingston's Almondvale Stadium Image copyright SNS
Image caption The fans were arrested after trouble at the Energy Assets Arena, also known as Almondvale stadium

Ten Rangers fans have appeared in court charged in connection with an alleged disturbance at a football ground in West Lothian.

Eight of the men were accused of singing offensive and sectarian songs at the Livingston v Rangers match at Almondvale on 4 October.

The men - aged from 16 to 49 and all from the West of Scotland - pleaded not guilty to the charges against them.

At Livingston Sheriff Court, their trial was fixed for April next year.

The Crown asked for a football banning order to be imposed as a special bail condition preventing the accused from attending regulated matches between now and their trials.

But their lawyers argued that the condition would be "disproportionate", given the long delay.

Sheriff Martin Edington released all the alleged offenders, with a special condition not to enter the Energy Assets Arena in Livingston.

Ryan MacLellan, 16, and Brian Robertson, 17, both from Lesmahagow, South Lanarkshire, Allan Thompson, 16, from Shotts, North Lanarkshire, and Gordon Cruikshank, 19, and Ryan McIlraith, 19, both from Glasgow, denied behaviour likely to incite public disorder.

They were charged with shouting swearing, uttering sectarian remarks, singing offensive and sectarian songs and songs in support of proscribed terrorist groups.

Robert Somerville, 49, from Glasgow, James McLachlan, 17, from Bishopbriggs, and Lyle Tomlinson, 21, from Glasgow, appeared on a separate complaint.

They denied committing a similar offence by chanting offensive remarks and singing offensive and sectarian songs.

James McLachlan along with Alan Bateman, 17, from Greenock, Inverclyde, and Kai Crielman, 16, from Coatbridge, North Lanarkshire, denied obstructing police in the football stadium on the same day.

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