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Man U fanzine’s KKK ban sparks civil liberties concerns

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By John Glenday | Reporter

February 13, 2012 | 1 min read

A spoof KKK feature in the latest edition of Red Square, a Manchester United FC fanzine, has seen the magazine banned and copies confiscated by the police – sparking complaints from civil liberties groups.

The article had been intended to satirise the ongoing racism row engulfing Liverpool striker Luis Suarez over comments made to United captain Patrice Evra and sported a cut out Ku Klux Klan face mask with the tag “LFC Suarez is innocent.”

Chief superintendant Mark Roberts said: “We cannot be in a situation where hundreds or thousands of people were displaying offensive images.”

Civil liberties campaigners denounced the measure however with a spokesperson for Liberty saying: “It's one thing for the police to take action in fear of a riot being provoked at a tense football match.

“But threatening seizure and prosecution of the fanzine after the event is really a step too far. When lampooning racism becomes a criminal matter you realise just how dangerously broad our speech offences have become.”

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