Page last updated at 16:29 GMT, Tuesday, 6 September 2011 17:29 UK

Justice Committee part 2

An academic has told the Justice Committee that the Offensive Behaviour at Football and Threatening Communications Bill was potentially a "snobs law" targetting rowdy football fans.

Dr Stuart Waiton from the University of Abertay was giving evidence to the committee on Tuesday 6 September 2011.

The bill, due to go before the Scottish Parliament, proposes jail terms of up to five years for those convicted of carrying out offensive behaviour in and around football grounds or making threatening communications.

Football banning orders will also be assessed.

Dr Waiton said politicians needed a reality check saying football was a pantomime and fans should not be criminalised for chanting offensively.

The MSPs also quizzed Pat Nevin, the broadcaster and former professional footballer; Graham Spiers from The Times; Dr Stuart Waiton, a lecturer in sociology and criminology from the University of Abertay Dundee and Graham Walker, a professor of political history from Queen's University Belfast.

During the first part of the committee, supporters' groups gave evidence including Mark Dingwall from the Rangers Supporters Trust; Jeanette Findlay from the Celtic Trust; Dr Neil Havis, from the ERIN Hibernian Supporters Trust; Greig Ingram from the Aberdeen FC Trust; Martin Riddell from the Association of Tartan Army Clubs; Derek Robertson from the ArabTRUST (The Dundee United Supporters Society) and Derek Watson from the Heart of Midlothian Supporters Trust.

Watch the video of the first part of the committee here.

Justice Committee membership


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