Bastia fan faces suspended prison term for ‘monkey noises’

A French prosecutor is seeking a three-month suspended prison sentence for a Bastia fan accused of racist abuse directed at Nice striker Mario Balotelli.

Prosecutor Nicolas Bessone also requested that Herve Guitton receive a four-year stadium ban and be fined 800 euros for inciting racial hatred.

Italian striker Balotelli had accused a section of the Corsican supporters of making “monkey sounds during the match” on January 20.

“So is racism legal in France? Or only in Bastia? Football is an amazing sport… those people like Bastia supporters make it horrible! A real shame,” an upset Balotelli wrote on Instagram after the game.

Bastia initially said it was “amazed” at the Italian’s allegations, before acknowledging “several” fans had abused the player during the 1-1 draw.

The French league’s disciplinary commission docked Bastia one point – suspended – and ordered the club to close its East Stand for the next three home games.

Bastia were also punished for crowd violence during April’s league game against Lyon which had to be abandoned at half time.