Lennon ‘shocked and stunned’ by assault verdict

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Neil Lennon has said he is “shocked and stunned” by the not proven verdict returned against a Hearts fan charged with assaulting the Celtic manager.

The verdict has left lawyers the length of the country perplexed after the jury failed to convict the man shown on video leaping and striking Mr Lennon.

The Hearts fan was convicted of breach of the peace after the sectarian element of that charge was removed by the jury.

Leading QC Paul McBride described the not proven verdict on the assault charge as “inexplicable” and claimed that the verdict “cast a long shadow over the Scottish legal system”.

Mr McBride ridiculed the verdict and said that the jury should have simply deleted the sectarian element from the assault charge, as they did with the breach of the peace charge.

The QC said that the SNP had put a huge amount of effort into tackling sectarianism and all parties must get together and back the Scottish government in their quest to tackle sectarianism.