THIS is not a decision the Crown Prosecution Service will have taken lightly, as it is an unusual step for criminal law to get involved in what happens on the sports field. But it is the lowest level of charges that relate to racism and the fine that could be applied, if found guilty, cannot exceed £2,500. The fine depends on how severe a case is deemed to be, while income is considered; richer people are likely to be fined more.
If, as seems likely, Terry pleads not guilty, it could drag on for weeks or months. However it should be done by the end of the season.
I expect the Football Association to conclude its own investigation very soon after the criminal process is completed. Yesterday’s CPS decision would appear to make it more likely that the FA will also charge Terry. Stronger evidence is needed for the CPS to bring criminal charges than the FA needs for its own regulations.
Simon Boyes is a senior lecturer at Nottingham Law School whose specialist areas include sports law and criminal litigation relating to sport.