LONDON, England, April 22- A Premier League footballer and his model girlfriend have become the target of sickening racist abuse while trying to raise money for charity.
Vile messages were posted online about Newcastle United striker Papiss Cisse, 27, and 22-year-old Rachelle Graham because he is black and she is white.
Miss Graham, who was crowned Miss Newcastle last May, took part in a sky dive from 10,000ft to raise funds for a specially equipped ambulance and furnishing a hospital in Sedhiou, Cisse’s home town in Senegal.
But the April 7 event was attacked on a website and social media by racists who are against mixed-race relationships.
The Miss England hopeful was alerted to the website by her mother who was horrified at the language used to describe her daughter and the £9million striker who have been dating for a year.
The comments are too vile to report here and police are now investigating the abuse as a hate crime, according to the Mirror.
Miss Graham told Sky Tyne and Wear: ‘It is horrific. The website targets the pair of us because I am white and Papiss is black.
‘Some of it is really threatening. I don’t understand why people would say these things, especially as Papiss is such a nice guy.
‘I guess we just have to ignore it and move on.’
She said the messages originated from a U.S. website ‘which targets white people who are going out with black people.
She told The Mirror that she suspected the person behind that website also set up a fake Twitter account pretending to be her.
‘It was made to look as much like mine as possible, using my photos and virtually the same address.
‘The first I knew of it was when I started to get messages from friends responding to tweets I had not sent. This person was sending out abuse and saying I was no longer with Papiss, and would use racist terms.’
On her Twitter page Miss Graham wrote: ‘Thank you everyone for your support regarding the racist website.’
Miss Graham who runs a cafe on the outskirts of Newcastle has previously spoken about her desire to help her boyfriend’s charity Friends of Sedhiou.
‘His agent introduced me to the man who looks after the charity and it all began from there. Ever since I won Miss Newcastle I have always wanted to do a skydive for charity and so I decided to do it for Papiss’s charity.
‘With me being Papiss’s girlfriend it means it’s a lot closer to my heart. I will be helping children who are less well off than we are and it makes it all worth while.’