A MAN who was charged with calling cops "hun c***s" has had an appeal against his conviction refused after he claimed the remark was not aggravated by religious prejudice.

David Di Pinto was at Hampden on December 19, 2021, for a Scottish League Cup final match between Celtic and Hibs. 

He was drunk and was shouting and swearing at other supporters in the crowd.

Two cops were approached by fans, who complained about Pinto's behaviour.

The officers approached him and asked him to refrain from causing a disturbance, but Pinto replied: “Fuck you, hun c***s.”

When he was advised he was under arrest, he shouted at the officers, “I’m no goin’ anywhere ya f*****g c***s".

He was removed from the stadium. 

Pinto, from Renfrew, was charged with behaving in a threatening or abusive manner and uttering a sectarian remark.

The charge went on to state "it will be proved in terms of Section 74 of the Criminal Justice (Scotland) Act 2003 that the aforesaid offence was aggravated by religious prejudice". 

After being sentenced to a £500 fine and a football banning order, Pinto appealed against the religious aggravation element of the conviction, on the basis that there was no evidence before the court that the use of the word “hun” displayed malice or ill-will towards members of the Protestant faith.

In a report dated October 6, 2023, Sheriff Principal Anwar, who made the appeal decision, noted: “The historic sectarian tensions within Glasgow and particularly between supporters of Rangers and Celtic are well understood in Scotland.

"It is also well understood that supporters of Rangers are perceived to be predominantly of the Protestant faith and that supporters of Celtic are perceived to be predominantly of the Catholic faith.

"The fact that the word 'hun' is used as a derogatory term to describe supporters of Rangers, who are perceived to be predominantly of the Protestant faith, is, in our view, a matter of judicial knowledge. 

"There are many theories and much speculation as to the origins of the term 'hun'.  It is variously claimed as a reference to nomadic people who invaded the Roman Empire in the fourth and fifth centuries, as a derogatory name for German soldiers or as a colloquial reference to a savage.

"We do not accept that in a footballing context, those using the term are doing so by any genuine reference to its historic usage.

"Whatever the historical origins of the word, in its modern usage well-informed persons in the west of Scotland recognise that when used in a footballing context, the word has now been adopted as an abusive sectarian term used to cause offence to those of the Protestant faith, not simply as a reference to a supporter of Rangers FC.

"It is, in that respect, no different to the use of the term “f****n” as a form of sectarian abuse to describe Celtic supporters who are perceived to be predominantly of the Roman Catholic faith." 

Sheriff Principal Anwar decided that the sheriff who sentenced Pinto, was accordingly correct to conclude that when he used the expression “hun c***s", he evinced malice or ill-will towards the officers based on his perception that they were supporters of Rangers FC and members of the Protestant faith.

His appeal was refused.