Jailed Twitter Student Awaits University Fate

Liam Stacey PIC: Tom Martin © WALES NEWS SERVICE

A student jailed for posting racially offensive comments about a Premier League footballer is still waiting to hear about his university future.

Liam Stacey, 21, is out of prison having served half of his 56-day sentence and is back home in Pontypridd.

The third year biology student remains suspended by the university while it carries out its own investigation.

A university spokesperson said: “The student remains suspended from the university pending the conclusion of our disciplinary proceedings.”

Stacey made the comments on Twitter about Bolton Wanderers midfielder Fabrice Muamba and was reported to the police.

He admitted inciting racial hatred at Swansea Magistrates Court last month and was sent to prison.

During Stacey’s sentencing, District Judge John Charles described the tweets as “vile and abhorrent”.

They came after 23-year-old Muamba collapsed during the FA Cup match against Tottenham Hotspur on Saturday, March 17, after suffering a cardiac arrest.

Magistrates were told police forces across Britain received complaints following Stacey’s Twitter comments.

Stacey tried to “distance himself” from the tweets by claiming his account had been hacked, the court heard.

He later tried to delete his page but was arrested the following day at his student house in Swansea.

He told police he had been drinking lager from 12.30pm on the Saturday, ahead of the Wales v France Six Nations rugby match.

He said he was “seven or eight out of 10” on the scale of drunkenness and sent his tweets on campus from his BlackBerry phone.

Gareth Jones, defending, said Stacey acted in a “moment of madness”.

He added: “Mr Stacey did not set out that day to be a racist.

“He is not someone who wakes up in the morning and thinks racist thoughts.

“He will pay dearly, probably for the rest of his life.”

Stacey lost an appeal against his sentence, claiming he had been punished enough.

Hearing his appeal, Mr Justice Wyn Williams told Stacey: “You received responses which were extremely critical but you did not desist.

“Instead you posted eight messages which were extremely abusive and insulting.

“By pleading guilty you admitted a racist intent to your comments.”

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