December 14th 2013
Two football fans have been arrested on suspicion of inciting racial hatred after highly offensive anti-Semitic comments were posted on Twitter following October's Tottenham Hotspur vs West Ham match at White Hart Lane.
Police arrested a 24-year-old man at his home in Croydon and a 22-year-old at his home in Wiltshire on Friday. Both were taken into taken into custody and have been bailed until January pending further enquiries. The Metropolitan Police say that the tweets made reference to Hitler and the gas chamber.
On the day of the derby itself, a Twitter user @pienmashgeezer – a West Ham fan – posted about the Holocaust and Adolf Hitler ahead of the derby and was later detained at his home in Hertfordshire on suspicion of malicious communications.
Police had warned both sets of fans before the game that anyone caught singing offensive chants would be arrested. West Ham had also written to its fans informing them of "zero tolerance" over offensive songs. Many Tottenham supporters refer to themselves as “Yid army” or “Yiddos” in solidarity with Jewish supporters who are the object of frequent abuse by opposition fans, but the Football Association regards the expression as "derogatory and offensive”, warning fans that they could be face prosecution for using it. However, Prime Minister David Cameron has argued that it is acceptable for Spurs fans to chant the term, a view welcomed by Manager Andre Villas-Boas.