U.K. Judge Tosses Charges Against Greta Thunberg, Other Climate Protesters

A British court on Friday dismissed charges against Greta Thunberg and four co-defendants, after finding “significant deficiencies in the evidence” brought by by the prosecution.In October, the 21-year-old Swedish climate activist was arrested for disobeying police while protesting outside an oil and gas conference in London. Fellow activists Christofer Kebbon, Joshua James Unwin, Jeff Rice

Powered by NewsAPI , in Liberal Perspective on .

news image

A British court on Friday dismissed charges against Greta Thunberg and four co-defendants, after finding “significant deficiencies in the evidence” brought by by the prosecution.

In October, the 21-year-old Swedish climate activist was arrested for disobeying police while protesting outside an oil and gas conference in London. Fellow activists Christofer Kebbon, Joshua James Unwin, Jeff Rice and Peter Barker were arrested alongside her.

While a responding officer claimed the group had illegally blocked access to the forum, District Judge John Law found the police orders to disperse were “so unclear that it was unlawful.”

Law also highlighted a general lack of evidence that the “peaceful, civilized and nonviolent” protest was all that disruptive.

Greta Thunberg laughs as she and fellow defendants and supporters return to Westminster Magistrates Court in London on February 2, 2src24. (Photo by Daniel LEAL / AFP) (Photo by DANIEL LEAL/AFP via Getty Images)
Greta Thunberg laughs as she and fellow defendants and supporters return to Westminster Magistrates Court in London on February 2, 2024. (Photo by Daniel LEAL / AFP) (Photo by DANIEL LEAL/AFP via Getty Images)

DANIEL LEAL via Getty Images

“It is quite striking to me that there were no witness statements taken from anyone in the hotel, approximately 1,000 people, or from anyone trying to get in,” Law explained.

“There was no evidence of any vehicles being impeded, no evidence of any interference with emergency services or any risk to life.”

In addition to acquitting the group, Law ordered the state to reimburse Thunberg’s travel costs and cover the fees of defense lawyer Raj Chada.

Chada celebrated the ruling in remarks made outside the court.

“The conditions imposed on the protest were unclear, uncertain and unlawful,” Chada said. “The government should stop prosecuting peaceful protesters, and instead find ways to tackle the climate crisis.”

After the U.K. government green-lit drilling for oil in the North Sea, climate protests — and arrests — have stepped up. A tally by The Guardian counted at least 630 arrests of peaceful oil and gas protesters in December alone.

Support HuffPost

Our 2024 Coverage Needs You

At HuffPost, we believe that everyone needs high-quality journalism, but we understand that not everyone can afford to pay for expensive news subscriptions. That is why we are committed to providing deeply reported, carefully fact-checked news that is freely accessible to everyone.

Whether you come to HuffPost for updates on the 2024 presidential race, hard-hitting investigations into critical issues facing our country today, or trending stories that make you laugh, we appreciate you. The truth is, news costs money to produce, and we are proud that we have never put our stories behind an expensive paywall.

Would you join us to help keep our stories free for all? Your contribution of as little as $2 will go a long way.

As Americans head to the polls in 2024, the very future of our country is at stake. At HuffPost, we believe that a free press is critical to having well-informed voters. That’s why our journalism is free for everyone, even though other newsrooms retreat behind expensive paywalls.

We cannot do this without your help. Support our newsroom by contributing as little as $2 to keep our news free for all.

As Americans head to the polls in 2024, the very future of our country is at stake. At HuffPost, we believe that a free press is critical to creating well-informed voters. That’s why our journalism is free for everyone, even though other newsrooms retreat behind expensive paywalls.

Our journalists will continue to cover the twists and turns during this historic presidential election. With your help, we’ll bring you hard-hitting investigations, well-researched analysis and timely takes you can’t find elsewhere. Reporting in this current political climate is a responsibility we do not take lightly, and we thank you for your support.

Contribute as little as $2 to keep our news free for all.

Support HuffPost

Read More