Exeter University racism: Probe into messages ‘encouraging gang rape and slavery’ in law society Whatsapp group

Exeter University is investigating vile racist messages allegedly shared by law students in a Whatsapp group.

Messages encouraging gang rape and a “race war” are alleged to have been sent in a group thread for the redbrick university’s Bracton Law Society.

Screengrabs of the messages posted on Facebook showed a text saying boat races should be “whites v blacks” and a vile remark about London Mayor Sadiq Khan.

The texts also appeared to encourage slavery, while another screenshot read: “Being chased by a n***** is every man’s worst nightmare”.

The students have been suspended while an investigation takes place.

A Devon and Cornwall police spokesperson said: “Police are aware of this incident and are liaising with staff at the University of Exeter.”

Exeter University (Google StreetView)

A spokesman for Exeter University has confirmed that the incident is being fully investigated and the police have been informed.

​Arsalan Motavali, a law student at the university, wrote on his Facebook account that he had been inspired to bring attention to the group chat following reports of racism at Nottingham Trent University.

(Facebook/Arsalan Motavali)

It came after a black university student captured a video at the NTU halls of a group of people shouting racist chants outside her room.

Mr Motavali said: “It was a normal group chat. Over time I was removed as an admin and multiple other students were added. At this point is where the content became increasingly racist and deplorable.”

He said he then stayed in the group chat to keep a record of the language used throughout by certain students. 

The Bracton Law Society issued a statement saying that those involved had been removed from committee and banned from the society. It added: “The Society does not condone or tolerate such behaviour.”

Mr Motavali said: “I refuse to stand by and let such people who speak in these terms go on to recruit at future law firms or be a part of University culture, whilst cowering behind their phones and talking like this about people that are part of the society they represent.

“I would hope all of the individuals will be appropriately dealt with in the coming days by BLS, Exeter Law School, the Students’ Guild and the University. It’s 2018, there is no reason these individuals should be tolerated or supported.”

A spokesman for Exeter University told the Standard: “The University of Exeter does not tolerate any form of racist, sexist or bigoted behaviour and is committed to eradicating any instances of discrimination and harassment that may arise.

“Following reports of allegations involving a small group of students, the University has launched a major investigation, in conjunction with the Students’ Guild, and suspended the students while this takes place.

“The police have also been informed. While it would be inappropriate to comment further while investigations take place, full disciplinary action will be taken as appropriate.”

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