Football: Morrison cleared over acid attack threat

LONDON (AFP) - English footballer Ravel Morrison was cleared on Monday of threatening to throw acid in the face of his ex-girlfriend and have her killed.

The 21-year-old West Ham United midfielder, now on loan to Cardiff City, was accused of having harassed Reah Mansoor over a period of four years but the Crown Prosecution Service formally withdrew the allegation during a hearing in Manchester.

Morrison was also accused of threatening to blow up Mansoor's house as part of his alleged campaign against her between January 2010 and July this year.

A not guilty verdict on Morrison's harassment charge was handed down in a case management hearing at Manchester Crown Court, attended by the player, on Monday.

But Morrison will still have to answer three remaining charges of assaulting Mansoor, 19, and her mother, Parveen Mansoor, 39, in the early hours of July 24, when he goes on trial in the same court next January.

The former Manchester United player denied the harassment charge at a preliminary hearing in August.

He also pleaded not guilty to two counts of assault by beating and one of assault causing actual bodily harm.

Morrison, originally from Manchester, was bailed out on condition that he lives at an address in Cardiff, does not contact directly or indirectly the two women complainants, and does not enter the Greater Manchester area except for a court appearance or in his capacity as a member of a professional football team playing a match in the region.

Regarded as one of the brightest young talents in English football while at Old Trafford, Morrison appeared for the first team in the League Cup before then-manager Alex Ferguson sold him to West Ham for £650,000 (S$1.35 million) in January 2012.

Hammers boss Sam Allardyce later sent Morrison out on loan to both Birmingham and Queens Park Rangers.

Morrison, capped four times by England Under-21s, is currently playing for Cardiff on a three-month loan deal with the second-tier Championship club.

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