A MAN has been cautioned for posting abusive comments about Bolton referee Mark Halsey’s battle against cancer on Twitter.

Halsey made a complaint to police in Bolton on Sunday about offensive messages on the social networking site which made reference to his throat cancer battle in 2009.

The comments, which were made after Liverpool’s 2-1 defeat to Manchester United on Sunday, have now been removed.

Officers met with Halsey, from Little Lever , on Wednesday and launched an investigation into offences committed under the Malicious Communications Act.

As a result, a 27-year-old man from Newcastle was cautioned yesterday, after admitting he was responsible for some of the offensive messages.

Detectives are now trying to trace anyone else responsible for the abuse.

Det Sgt Tony Lunt said: “Clearly the victim and his family were very distressed by the extremely offensive comments posted on Twitter.

“We take all reports of abuse on social networking sites very seriously as these remarks can and do have a devastating impact on people’s lives.

“As a result of our investigation, we have cautioned a man who has admitted responsibility for some of the messages.

“This individual was very apologetic and realises that in a moment of stupidity he posted deeply derogatory remarks about the victim and completely regrets his actions.

“Twitter, like all social networking sites, can be a fantastic tool for people to communicate but it must not be abused to the detriment of decent hard-working people who may be in the public eye.

“Our inquiries are ongoing to identify anyone else who posted these offensive messages.”

Halsey returned to Premier League refereeing in March 2010 following his battle against the illness.