The Rat Man from Arlesey admits racially abusing rail ticket inspector

A RAIL passenger, known as the Rat Man because he travels with a rodent on his shoulder, subjected a Scottish ticket inspector to a torrent of racist abuse. Allan Page, 39, of Cox s Way, Arlesey repeatedly swore at Richard McGaffin and told him he should

A RAIL passenger, known as the Rat Man because he travels with a rodent on his shoulder, subjected a Scottish ticket inspector to a torrent of racist abuse.

Allan Page, 39, of Cox's Way, Arlesey repeatedly swore at Richard McGaffin and told him he should not be allowed to work in England, Luton Crown Court heard today (Monday).

Prosecutor Daniel Higgins said that just before 2pm on July 23 last year ticket inspector Hayley Baker called Mr McGaffin to assist her in dealing with Page, who had no ticket and was pretending to be asleep in the carriage at Huntingdon rail station.

When Mr McGaffin spoke to him Page sat up and said: "Why are you shouting at me in a Scottish accent?"


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The ticket inspector replied: "I am Scottish."

Page went on: "You have a bad attitude. Just because you are in a uniform and have a gay tie on you think you are it. F... off back to Scotland. Why are you here? You are not welcome here."

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He clenched his fist and got near to Mr McGaffin's face while continuing to be racially abusive.

Another passenger heard Page's aggressive language which was described as a "torrent of abuse", said Mr Higgins.

The police were called and Page was arrested at Peterborough. When he was bailed he was given a letter from First Capital Connect telling him he was not welcome on its trains or at its stations.

But Page was back on the train on August 19, again without a ticket. He saw Mr McGaffin again and swore at him.

As he left the train at Biggleswade he said: "Thanks for the free lift mate. You are going to get done over bruv. I have got gypsies looking out for you."

The next day, he was on the train at Arlesey station and saw the ticket inspector and said: "Richard, bruv. I have got gypsies waiting at court to kill you."

Page pleaded guilty to racially aggravated use of threatening words or behaviour and two counts of intimidation. He had 15 previous convictions for 30 offences, some of them for travelling on trains without tickets.

Christopher Strachan, defending, asked for the case to be adjourned for pre-sentence reports. He said Page had told him he suffered from bi-polar disorder.

The judge, Recorder Ryan, adjourned sentence. He granted Page bail on condition that he does not travel on trains or go to stations in Herts, Beds or Cambridgeshire.

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