Ched Evans
Ched Evans

Web users who broke the law by naming the woman who football star Ched Evans raped, were fined in court.

Nine young adults aged between 18 and 27, pleaded guilty to revealing the identity of the 19-year-old victim on Twitter and Facebook last April. Among them was the cousin of rapist footballer Ched Evans, Gemma Thomas.

She and Evans' friend, Craig MacDonald, 26, were among Twitter and Facebook users who launched a stream of abuse at the woman, including breaking the law by lifting the lifelong anonymity provided to victims of sexual offences.

MacDaonald smeared the victim as " a money grabber," before deleting his tweets and apologising.

All nine were sentenced with a £624 fine under the Secual Offences Act,

Dominic Green, 23, told Prestatyn magistrates court he did not know posting messages on social media counted as publishing. He added he was drunk when he exposed the identity of Evans' victim, which is illegal. Green admitted doing so was "utter stupidity."

Shaun Littler, 22, of Sheffield, revealed her name because he was angry that his football team had been deprived of its best player. Evans' goals had fired the Blades into promotion contention before the trial. The club's charge toward the Championship faltered after he was jailed for five years.

Paul Devine, 26, published content of 'particular concern' on Twitter, after United lost a football match to MK Dons. He apologised for his actions.

Biology teacher Holly Price, 25, retweeted the victim's name and admitted in court she was an "idiot" for it.

Also pleading guilty were David Cardwell, 25, Benjamin Davis, 27 and Michael Ashton, 21, who took to Twitter to say the victim "made him sick."

A tenth defendant who denied the charge was bailed until January, next year.

Click here for End Violence Against Women explaining why rape victims require legal protection.