Cliftonville's Jay Donnelly jailed for four months for distributing indecent image of 16-year-old
Cliftonville player Jay Donnelly has been sentenced to four months in prison for distributing an indecent image of a child.
The Irish Times report that Donnelly, of Ardilea Drive in the Ardoyne area of Belfast, has been granted bail pending appeal after a judge handed down the custodial sentence for what has been described as a "gross invasion of privacy."
Donnelly, 23, admitted to the charge last month of taking a photograph of a 16-year-old girl who was wearing his team's shirt while they were engaged in a sexual act in the summer of 2016.
The footballer sent the photograph to several friends in a WhatsApp group which included more than one fellow Cliftonville player before it appeared on social media platforms.
Donnelly continued to appear for Cliftonville after the allegations emerged although the club stopped selecting him in recent months after the investigation intensified.
In a statement following the sentence, Cliftonville FC said: "Following the outcome of the court case involving Jay Donnelly, the judgement of the court and the intended appeal have been noted.
"The judgement, as well as the outcome of the appeal, will be given due consideration by Cliftonville Football Club.
"The club are mindful of their duties and responsibilities and will continue to act on this basis."