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Paralympian in court accused of climbing on plane at London City Airport

PUBLISHED: 10:00 14 October 2019

Protesters at London City Airport during an Extinction Rebellion climate change protest. Picture: Kirsty O'Connor/PA Wire

Protesters at London City Airport during an Extinction Rebellion climate change protest. Picture: Kirsty O'Connor/PA Wire

A former Paralympic cyclist accused of climbing on to a plane at London City Airport and gluing himself to it has denied causing a public nuisance.

James Brown, 55, who is visually impaired, is alleged to have climbed on top of the British Airways aircraft on Thursday during the Extinction Rebellion protests.

He appeared at Westminster Magistrates' Court on Saturday where a not guilty plea was entered on his behalf by his solicitor Raj Chada.

Brown, of Magdalen Road, Exeter, wore a grey jumper to the hearing and spoke only to confirm his name, address and date of birth.

The alleged offence took place two days after his birthday.

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District judge John Zani granted Brown conditional bail, prohibiting him from going within one mile of any airport in the UK.

His case was heard in front of a full public gallery, which included members of Extinction Rebellion. There was applause at the end of the hearing.

Mr Chada requested that Brown's walking cane was returned to him after it was confiscated by officers. The request was granted by Mr Zani.

Brown is next due to appear at Southwark Crown Court on November 8 for trial.

The athlete's arrest and charging capped a week of demonstrations against climate inaction which saw more than 1,100 arrests across the capital.

Brown competed for Britain, Ireland and Northern Ireland in a career which saw him participate at five Paralympic Games and earn two gold medals and a bronze.

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