Police make nine arrests for racist chanting

By Rob Virtue on January 25, 2012 12:12 PM |

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Officers from British Transport Police investigating reports of racist chanting following Charlton Athletic's FA Cup clash with Fulham earlier this month have made nine arrests.

The south-east London football club's chief executive Stephen Kavanagh accompanied the police on a series of raids on suspects' homes on Wednesday morning.

It was revealed on the Charlton official website the club has been working alongside officers investigating the incident which occurred on a train between Putney and Waterloo on January 7.

Witnesses said a group, believed to be Charlton fans, were intimidating others onboard and chanting racist songs.

The arrests took place in Abbey Wood, Kidbrooke, Woolwich, Lee, Orpington and Deptford.

All nine men, aged between 20 and 30, were taken to police stations for further questioning.

Kavanagh said: "Anyone who knows anything about Charlton, knows of the club's longstanding commitment to combating racism, and that will always be the case.

"We do our utmost to educate wherever possible, but if people cross the line, we will also do our utmost to investigate and take action against those offenders, working closely with the police."

Charlton also revealed it carried out a covert operation at Walsall last month, where club officials joined away fans at the Banks's Stadium following complaints from fans about offensive chanting at previous matches.

Kavanagh added: "We should be clear that we are talking about a very small minority of people, and the number of complaints we received from other supporters about their behaviour is hugely encouraging."

If you have any information about the train incident, contact BTP on Freefone 0800 40 50 40 quoting incident B11/LSA of 23/01/2012. Alternatively, call the independent charity Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.