West Ham: Man arrested as police investigate anti-Semitic chant aimed at Jewish man by club’s fans | Football News

A 55-year-old man has been arrested on suspicion of committing a hate crime as police continue to investigate social media footage appearing to show West Ham supporters singing an anti-Semitic song towards a Jewish man on a plane.

The video emerged on Thursday and appeared to show Hammers supporters on a flight to Belgium singing the offensive song as the man walked down the aisle to take his seat.

The fans on the flight were on their way to watch West Ham play Belgian side Genk in a Europa League tie, which ended 2-2.

The man was arrested at Stansted Airport on Friday afternoon after arriving in the UK from Belgium and was taken to a police station in Essex, where he will be questioned.

An Essex Police statement said: “We immediately launched an investigation after being made aware of a video on social media of a man being subjected to harassment whilst taking his seat on board an aeroplane before it departed from Stansted Airport on 4th November.”

Essex Police chief superintendent Tom Simons, who is leading the investigation, said: “Essex Police will not tolerate racism or discrimination of any kind. Having been made aware of the incident this morning, officers worked quickly to secure an arrest at the earliest possible opportunity.”

David Moyes, the West Ham manager, has condemned the footage of the fans singing the chant.

Moyes, who marked his 1,000th game as a manager with the draw at Genk that sealed the Hammers’ qualification from the group stage of the Europa League, said: “I have to say first of all that I don’t see our football club being like that. We are a diverse football club. There’s no room for discrimination anywhere.

David Moyes
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David Moyes condemned the behaviour of the individuals on the flight

“I’m really disappointed to hear about it. I’m sure it’s only individuals and not a big section of supporters. I’m just sorry to hear about it.

“I want this football club to be recognised for having a really good football team. I want this football club to be recognised as being a great club in London and well respected.

“We have incredible supporters who follow us home and away but I don’t want any labels connected to this whatsoever – discrimination or racism, none at all. We don’t want to be associated with supporters like this. I want us to fully move on from this.”

West Ham condemned the video on Thursday night and vowed to punish any supporters identified with an indefinite ban.

A club spokesperson said: “West Ham United is appalled by the contents of the video circulating on social media and condemn the behaviour of the individuals involved.

“The club is liaising with the airline and relevant authorities to identify the individuals.

“We continue to be unequivocal in our stance – we have a zero-tolerance approach to any form of discrimination. Any individuals identified will be issued with an indefinite ban from the club.

“Equality, diversity and inclusion are at the heart of the football club and we do not welcome any individuals who do not share those values.”

Essex Police say their inquiry remains ongoing and have asked anyone with information or who may have phone footage of the incident to call 101.

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