Extinction Rebellion protesters convicted after blockading newspaper printing presses


Extinction Rebellion protesters convicted after blockading newspaper printing presses

A serial Extinction Rebellion protester has been fined just £150 after being found guilty of blockading printing presses.

Laura Frandsen, 30, from London, was one of six climate change protesters charged with obstructing the highway outside Newsprinters printing works in Broxbourne, Hertfordshire, on Sept 4, 2020.

Appearing at St Albans Magistrates’ Court, Judge Sally Fudge convicted the defendants, saying that while the demonstration was “peaceful”, it had a significant impact on the ability of businesses to function and caused newspapers to lose an estimated £1 million.

The action significantly disrupted the distribution of three and a half million copies of national newspapers, including The Telegraph, The Sun, The Daily Mail, and The Times.

Around 100 workers were also unable to leave the plant in their cars and were effectively blockaded in the premises.

The judge found the police had acted proportionately in arresting the protesters, adding: “The level of disruption caused by the protest was high, and the obstruction of the highway went on for a very long time.”

But in sentencing the six, she handed most a conditional discharge and gave Frandsen, who has two previous convictions for similar offences, a £150 fine.

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