updated 3/21/2012 4:33:53 PM ET 2012-03-21T20:33:53

A law student who racially abused former England striker Stan Collymore on Twitter has been ordered to do 240 hours of unpaid community service and pay $238 in legal costs.

Joshua Cryer was spared a jail sentence after pleading guilty to a charge of sending grossly offensive messages to Collymore, who is now a radio commentator and newspaper columnist.

District Judge Stephen Earl ordered the 21-year-old Cryer to complete the unpaid work over two years.

Collymore, a former Liverpool and Nottingham Forest striker, reported the abuse to police in January.

Collymore, who also acted alongside Sharon Stone in "Basic Instinct 2," says on Twitter that he thanked police "for their professionalism in dealing with this case."

Copyright 2012 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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