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From The Socialist newspaper, 6 September 2017

Anti-fracking campaigners' legal fight

Anti-fracking demo, Manchester, 21.9.14, photo Dylan Murphy

Anti-fracking demo, Manchester, 21.9.14, photo Dylan Murphy   (Click to enlarge)

John Sibbald, Wakefield and Pontefract Socialist Party

Ineos, the largest shale gas exploration company in the UK was granted an interim injunction against anti-fracking protesters on 31 July.

This injunction specifically outlaws so-called 'slow walking', where protesters attempt to delay delivery vehicles. This has been ruled as a lawful form of protest by some district judges.

It significantly increases the risks to those who protest against fracking. The maximum penalty for obstructing the highway is a 1,000 fine, although most people who are found guilty are given a conditional discharge.

The maximum penalty for contempt of court is two years in prison. According to Ineos, anyone who breaches the order by "interfering with lawful activities" would be "held in contempt of court and may be imprisoned, fined or have your assets seized".

Ineos claim that they are not opposed to lawful protest, that is to say that they don't object to a few people with placards. However, shouting at Ineos staff or anybody delivering to Ineos sites is looked on by them as unlawful.

The next hearing in the High Court in London is 12 September. If this is not challenged in the strongest possible way it could affect not only anti-fracking protests but also other kinds of demonstrations and protests.

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In The Socialist 6 September 2017:


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Related links:

Fracking:

triangleFracking companies backed by government and courts

triangleChesterfield May Day: march turnout great

triangleDerbyshire says: No fracking way!

triangleMovement growing against fracking giant Ineos

triangleCourt maintains injunction against fracking protesters

Protest:

triangleBirmingham home carers' protest demo

triangleLeeds protest against NHS treatment cuts

triangleHuddersfield Socialist Party organise counter-protest against EDL

triangleEDL sent packing in Worcester

Wakefield:

triangleTory plan to hold dinner at coal mining museum defeated

triangleWakefield Socialist Party: Socialists and the National Question

triangleWakefield Socialist Party: Universal Credit - the Tories' latest assault on the poor

Pontefract:

triangleMary Creagh should resign not remain

triangleSupport the 'Kinsley 3' cleaners in pay fight

Gas:

triangleRonan Point disaster 50 years on

Hearing:

triangleSave Southall Town Hall legal hearing success

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