Bristol Rovers' Derek Riordan fined for anti-gay tirade
A FOOTBALLER on loan to Bristol Rovers has been fined for hurling homophobic abuse at door staff who threw him out of a nightclub.
Derek Riordan has been fined £800 for abusing staff who had ejected
him from the venue in Edinburgh, on May 7.
The city’s sheriff court heard how the 29-year-old former Hibs and Celtic player called workers at the club “poofs” as they threw him out of the entertainment complex.
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The court heard how staff removed the footballer because he is banned for life from a number of pubs and clubs in the Scottish capital.
But rather than go quietly, Riordan started abusing members of staff at the complex with anti-gay slurs.
The former Scotland international, of Silverknowes, Edinburgh, pleaded guilty to a breach of the peace charge before Sheriff Nigel Morrison QC.
On Friday, defence solicitor Kathleen More told the court that Riordan was sorry for his conduct.
Ms More said that Riordan was unaware that the Picture House venue was part of the consortium of clubs in Edinburgh which had banned the footballer.
She added: “He is subject to a ban under the Unite Scheme. He has been provided with a list of pubs and clubs in Edinburgh which are part of the scheme.
“However, he was unaware that the Picture House venue was part of the scheme.
“Venues that are part of the Unite scheme usually have signs above their entrances. The Picture House does not.”
Ms More also said that Riordan had spent the evening of May 7 drinking with pals and had gone on to the Picture House to meet a few friends.
She added: “He was only inside for 15 minutes at the most. He was asked to leave before he had finished his drink. “He was caused some pain and discomfort when he was being ejected from the venue.
“I am afraid this is what sparked his aggressive behaviour.”
“My client is a professional footballer and he has played for a number of prominent football teams in Scotland.
“He currently has a contract up until Christmas for a team in Bristol and he would be able to pay the cost of a fine through his savings.
“The address for Mr Riordan that has been provided to the court is of the family home in Edinburgh.
“When he is in Edinburgh he spends most of his time there with his long term girlfriend and their two children.”
Sheriff Morrison told Riordan that he was satisfied that the matter could be dealt with by financial penalty.