Detail of an office worker working at a computer workstation (Adam Peck/PA)
16 November 2021

Man pleads guilty to racist message directed at footballer and owning child porn

16 November 2021

A man has pleaded guilty to racially abusing footballer Yannick Bolasie on social media and having child pornography on his phone.

Kirk Thompson appeared at Kirkcaldy Sheriff Court in Fife charged with possession of indecent images of children, permitting to be taken or making indecent images of children and sending a racist message to the ex-Everton and Middlesbrough winger, who now plays in Turkey.

The 22-year-old, of Ravenscraig, Kirkcaldy, pleaded guilty to all three charges at the hearing on Tuesday.

Prosecutor Ronnie Hay told the court four indecent images and movies were found on Thompson’s phone during a police search at his address in March this year.

Two were rated category A, considered to be the most severe, and the other two were labelled Category B.

One other image found with text added to it was reported as category C.

During the search, police also found a racially offensive private message sent to Mr Bolasie on Thompson’s phone.

In March this year, the footballer screenshot and shared the message he received from Thompson’s Instagram account adding: “Something seriously wrong with people… keyboard warriors.

“Still yet to meet a person who had this energy when they saw me.”

Sheriff Alastair Brown described the message as “thoroughly offensive” and “reprehensible” which was seen by at least 35,000 people on social media, the court heard.

Sheriff Brown delayed sentencing Thompson until January 6 adding: “Yannick Bolasie circulated it (the message) much more widely, and the question is why did he do that?

“I would like to know Mr Bolasie’s reasoning before sentencing.”

He also called for lawyers to check the time length of the indecent movies found in the accused’s possession before determining his sentence.

Thompson was released on bail under the Sexual Offences Act for the charges in relation to indecent images of children.

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