United Kingdom

Liverpool fan who smuggled flare into game cries as he’s banned from matches

Luke Dwyer was brought before the courts last year for dangerous driving while barred from getting behind the wheel, then the 29-year-old went on to commit two more offences

Luke Dwyer of Ashton-in-Makerfield, was jailed for six months

A man who attempted take a flare into a Liverpool game as jailed after twice breaching a suspended sentence.

Luke Dwyer was brought before the courts last year for dangerous driving while barred from getting behind the wheel.

But despite being given a chance, the 29-year-old went on to commit two more offences.

The Liverpool Echo told how the accused cried in court as he ended up with a prison sentence for the first time.

Dwyer was described by the judge, Recorder Daniel Prowse, as having an “appalling” driving record and had narrowly avoided prison in 2021 after a judge handed him a 10-month sentence, suspended for 18 months.

Paul Blasbery, prosecuting, said Liverpool FC fan Dwyer was then picked up by a ground search dog as he tried to get in to Selhurst Park to see Liverpool play Crystal Palace on Sunday, January 23 this year.

Officers found a flare, which Dwyer then said he was planning to set off at a relative’s house rather than in the ground.

He was charged and pleaded guilty, breaching his suspended sentence.

Luke Dwyer was jailed for six months at Liverpool Crown Court
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Image:

Liverpool Echo)

Knowing that breach alone put him at risk of jail, he was then stopped by police four months later in Newton-le-Willows after they saw a car driving erratically.

When officers approached the car just after midnight on Wednesday, May 5, they found Dwyer, who was disqualified from driving, behind the wheel and with cannabis in the vehicle.

Police statements provided to the court said Dwyer was “very much under the influence of cannabis”, with glazed eyes and slow speech.

Attempts to get a blood test to confirm the presence of drugs in his system were refused by Dwyer and he was later arrested on suspicion of driving while disqualified, failing to provide a sample and possession of cannabis.

Callum Ross, defending, said Dwyer accepted responsibility for all of the offences as soon as they were brought to court and deeply regretted his actions.

Addressing Dwyer’s refusal of drug testing, Mr Ross said it was driven by medical concerns rather than trying to avoid being caught.

Mr Ross said: “He has had blood samples done previously and he has passed out as a result. Clearly that is not a defence and he accepts that by his guilty plea.

“Perhaps you can see it was an honestly held belief, though not an excuse.”

The incident involving the flare meant Dwyer was made the subject of a football banning order.

Appealing to the judge to keep that ban as short as possible, Mr Ross said: “He is a big football fan, he has been attending away and home matches for Liverpool for a decade now.

“He has never had a football related conviction prior to this.”

But the judge, Recorder Daniel Prowse, said Dwyer’s actions, particularly the fact that his offences in May were similar to the ones he received his original suspended sentence for, meant he had to go to jail.

Dwyer, of Ashton-in-Makerfield, Greater Manchester was sentenced to a total of six months.

That included an eight-week prison term for the offences committed earlier this month and four months of his suspended sentence.

He is also disqualified from driving for four years and banned from regulated football matches for three years.

Dwyer cried at various points during the hearing but was emotionless as he was led to the cells.

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