THE life of a Celtic football supporter became a misery after he was

accused of hitting Mo Johnston, of Rangers, on the head with a pie

during an Old Firm match, Glasgow Sheriff Court was told yesterday.

''Hate mail'' was sent to the home of Mr Ronnie Taylor, 25, a janitor,

at Glenrothes in Fife. ''He and his wife and even their four-year-old

child have suffered greatly because of this pie throwing incident,''

said defending lawyer Miss Patricia MacLeod.

She said that the pie that Mr Taylor threw was not the one that hit

the Rangers player after he had taken a corner kick just before


Miss MacLeod said that after a video tape of the affair had been

studied the Crown had withdrawn the allegation that the accused had

assaulted the player with a pie.

Mr Taylor, of Reid Place, Glenrothes, admitted an amended charge that

he conducted himself in a disorderly manner, shouted, swore, threw a pie

on to the pitch, and committed a breach of the peace.

Sheriff Andrew Gibb fined him #100.

Miss Mary McCrory, prosecuting, said that two minutes before half-time

in the match on November 4, police at the Broomloan Road stand observed

the accused in the second front row. ''He was shouting and swearing and

gesticulating towards the field of play at a time when various objects,

including pies, were being thrown,'' she said.

She added: ''One of the Rangers' players, Maurice Johnston, was struck

on the back of the head with a pie and the accused was arrested.''

Miss MacLeod said that Taylor and his family had become greatly

distressed at the tone and volume of ''hate mail'' that followed his

arrest. ''In matters like this people get fired up,'' she said.

Sheriff Gibb replied: ''That is why he should not behave this way.