40 Soccer Fans Removed from Stena Ferry for Unruly Behavior

File image courtesy Stena

Published Nov 25, 2019 7:27 PM by The Maritime Executive

On Saturday night, 40 football fans were removed from a Stena Line ferry for unruly behavior after the vessel's master called the police. Three of them were arrested for "public order offenses."

The passengers boarded the ferry at the town of Cairnryan, Scotland for a sailing to Northern Ireland. According to UK media, they were returning to Belfast from a football match between Celtic and Livingston at the Parkhead stadium in Glasgow. 

 "Following an unacceptable level of behaviour from football fans on-board the Stena Line vessel, due to depart Cairnryan at 11pm on Saturday 23 November to Belfast, the captain called police in Cairnryan for assistance to escort the group off the ship before sailing," a Stena spokesperson told media. "Stena Line has a zero tolerance policy when it comes to staff or customer abuse and will refuse travel to anyone who contravenes this policy thus ensuring the safety and comfort of its passengers and crew." 

The police intervention resulted in several arrests and an overnight stay for the full party. 

"About 40 people were escorted from the 2300 hours ferry at the request of the captain because of their behaviour. Three were arrested for public order offences," Police Scotland said in a statement. "All 40 later sailed on the 0600 hours ferry on Sunday morning without issue."

Celtic FC fans have occasionally attracted controversy for confrontational behavior in and around football matches, including brawling with rivals and singing anthems that reference the Irish Republican Army (IRA).