A Welsh biology student was jailed today for tweeting racist abuse at footballer Fabrice Muamba after the Bolton midfielder collapsed during a match.
Liam Stacey, 21, tweeted "LOL **** Muamba. He's dead!!!" as medics tried to revive the 23-year-old player, who had suffered a heart attack during an FA Cup quarter-final match against Tottenham Hotspur on 17 March.
Stacey's crass comments provoked revulsion and led to a number of complaints to police.
He was quickly tracked down, arrested and charged with inciting racial hatred. The Swansea University student initially claimed his Twitter account had been hacked but later admitted he sent the offending tweet and follow up messages aimed at other Twitter users who took him to task for his outburst.
Last week Stacey pleaded guilty to inciting racial hatred before Swansea magistrates and returned today to learn he would be jailed for eight weeks (56 days) for the offence.
District judge John Charles told the third-year undergraduate that he had posted "vile and offensive" comments and that his sentence had to "reflect public abhorrence", Sky News reports.
Muamba remains in intensive care at the London Chest hospital, where his condition is described as serious but stable, according to the latest statement by Bolton Wanderers bosses. The Zaire-born footballer received numerous defibrillator shocks both on the pitch and in the ambulance, but his heart stopped beating for 78 minutes. ®