Wilfried Zaha.

  • A 12-year-old boy has been arrested by police investigating racist messages that were sent to Crystal Palace star Wilfried Zaha on social media.
  • Zaha was calld a "black c---"and sent photos of the Ku Klux Klan on Instagram prior to Sunday's 2-0 defeat to Aston Vila.
  • "Thanks to everyone who raised it. Racism won't be tolerated," said West Midlands police.
  • Shortly after the arrest, Zaha, 27, took to Twitter to thank the force for its "swift action in making an arrest."
  • The boy, who has not been named, likely because he is a minor, has been released while enquiries continue, police said Monday. He has not been charged.
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A 12-year-old boy has been arrested by police investigating racist messages that were sent to Crystal Palace star Wilfried Zaha on social media.

Zaha, who is Black, shared screenshots of Instagram messages sent to him prior to Sunday's 2-0 defeat to Aston Villa.

"You better not score today you black c--- or I'll come dressed to your house as a ghost," said the messages, alongside photos of Ku Klux Klan members.

West Midlands police responded to Zaha immediately saying it was "looking into" the incident, before confirming the arrest of a boy, 12, just hours later.

"We were alerted to a series of racist messages sent to a footballer today and after looking into them and conducting checks, we have arrested a boy," said the force in a statement on its Twitter account.

"The 12-year-old from Solihull has been taken to custody.

"Thanks to everyone who raised it. Racism won't be tolerated."

The boy, who has not been named - likely because he is a minor - has not been charged.

Shortly after, Zaha took to Twitter to thank West Midlands police for its "swift action in making an arrest."

"People need to understand that whatever your age, that your behaviour and your work come with consequences and you cannot hide behind social media," the Palace forward, 27, continued.

"It is important social media platforms do as they did yesterday and seek out these individual and remove them.

"This is not the first time I have received messages like this, nor am I the only player to receive messages like this - it happens every day. I want to thank everyone for the love and support but enough is enough!

"It is not enough to be disgusted by these messages I received and move on. It isn't enough to just say #notoracism. We need action, we need education, things need to change."

On Monday, West Midlands police said that the boy has been released.

"The 12-year-old boy arrested in connection with racist social media messages sent to a footballer has been released under investigation while our enquiries continue," it said in a tweet.

"Racism has no place in society and we're attempting to contact the footballer to obtain a statement."

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