In response to hate crime comments shared on social media, Chelsea welcomed the arrest of a young man.
The Metropolitan Police said today that, after hateful messages circulated over months, a 21-year-old was arrested.
The arrest was made by the Nottinghamshire Police and the Met in Retford.
In a tweet, the police said: ‘This morning, @MPSFootballUnit officers supported by @NottPolFootball visited an address in Retford and arrested a 21-year-old male under the Malicious Communications Act.
This was in reaction to an investigation into a series of hate crime messages that were shared over several months on social media in 2020.
@ChelseaFC, who collaborated with the MPS to locate the perpetrator, brought these crimes to the attention of the police. At a police station, the male was interviewed and released under investigation.’
Sportsmail understands the arrest is not linked to the violence of the players of the club or recent events that were targeted by Antonio Rudiger and Reece James.
Chelsea tweeted in response:’ We welcome today’s arrest, which illustrates that hateful comments exchanged on social media have consequences.
‘We continue to work closely with the police on this critical topic to support their inquiries.’
High profile harassment of Chelsea’s players follows the arrest.
Rudiger said he endured ‘massive’ racial harassment on social media on Saturday, leading Chelsea to begin an investigation, which may also result in police action and have some of the club’s fans barred.
The defender said Chelsea fans who blamed him for being instrumental in the sacking of Frank Lampard, a charge that Rudiger says is ‘nonsense’, had been racially abused.
Chelsea has passed details on the horrific abuse of Reece James, the brilliant, young full-back of the club, to the police.
James posted some of the vile racist messages on social media that he got and insisted that ‘everything has to change.’
Chelsea said they were ‘upset’ by the violence received by James and called for more immediate action.
A club statement read:’ Everyone at Chelsea FC is disgusted with the racial harassment on social media that Reece James got.
‘This club considers bigotry intolerable and all types of discriminatory conduct. We denounce it completely. We must build a social media climate in sport, as in broader society, where hateful and divisive acts are as intolerable online as they would be on the street.’