An aggressive man who threatened and racially abused rail staff for being Welsh at Shrewsbury railway station has been jailed for 20 weeks.

Kevin Byrne, 59, and of Sandford Avenue, Church Stretton, was found guilty of racially aggravated fear or provocation of violence at Telford Magistrates’ Court on November 25, 2020.

At around 5.30pm on November 13, 2019, Byrne was asked for a ticket by a rail staff member when he tried to exit through the barriers at Shrewsbury railway station.

The court heard how Byrne threatened the rail staff member when he was unable to produce a ticket, saying “I am going to slit your throat. If you get me arrested I am going to stab you.”

Byrne became increasingly aggressive and racially abused the member of rail staff for being Welsh. He went on to threaten another member of rail staff, shouting “you are a dead man”.

On December 31, 2020 at Kidderminster Magistrates' Court, Byrne was sentenced to a total of 20 weeks in prison and ordered to pay a total of £1,315 in compensation.

British Transport Police Sergeant Emma Harper said: “Threatening behaviour towards members of rail staff will not be tolerated under any circumstances.

“I am grateful to the courts for the sentence imposed on the defendant and hope it serves as a reminder that this type of behaviour will not be tolerated on the railway.

“We will continue to deal with anti-social behaviour robustly and ensure offenders are brought to justice."

Anyone who experiences hate crime on public transport, can contact British Transport Police by texting 61016 or calling 0800 40 50 40 at any time. If there is immediate danger, always call 999.