BBC News
watch One-Minute World News
Last Updated: Wednesday, 23 January 2008, 14:03 GMT
Bid to ban cross-border hooligans
Football violence
The bill would see banning orders extended to cover Scotland
A Scots MP has tabled a bill seeking to close a loophole allowing banned fans from England and Wales to attend football matches north of the border.

Russell Brown said football banning orders had been "extremely effective" in reducing football violence.

However, he said any restrictions imposed in England and Wales were, at present, "unenforceable" in Scotland.

He said this meant known football hooligans were free to travel to games in the likes of Gretna and Dumfries.

Football banning orders were introduced in England and Wales in 2000.

Scotland followed suit six years later.

Russell Brown
Effectively it means that a known football hooligan banned from matches in Carlisle can freely travel to and attend a match just over the border in Gretna or Dumfries to potentially reap havoc
Russell Brown MP

Bans last between two and 10 years, with a breach of any order carrying a penalty of up to six months in prison and a 5,000 fine.

However, while Scottish bans extend south of the border the same is not true in reverse.

The Dumfries and Galloway Labour MP tabled his Football Spectators and Sports Grounds Bill to the House of Commons on Tuesday.

"Football banning orders have been extremely effective across the UK in helping to bring the level of football-related violence arrests down to a record low," he said.

"But it is a concern, particularly in the south of Scotland, that this loophole exists.

"Effectively it means that a known football hooligan banned from matches in Carlisle can freely travel to and attend a match just over the border in Gretna or Dumfries to potentially reap havoc."

He said he hoped that by closing the loophole it would prevent Scotland from becoming a base for banned hooligans from England and Wales.



SEE ALSO
Football ban orders take effect
29 Aug 06 |  Scotland

RELATED INTERNET LINKS
The BBC is not responsible for the content of external internet sites



FEATURES, VIEWS, ANALYSIS
Has China's housing bubble burst?
How the world's oldest clove tree defied an empire
Why Royal Ballet principal Sergei Polunin quit

PRODUCTS & SERVICES

Americas Africa Europe Middle East South Asia Asia Pacific