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Suspended sentence for ExCeL arms fair protester

PUBLISHED: 15:16 23 April 2018 | UPDATED: 15:22 23 April 2018

Stratford Magistrates' Court handed Maria Gallastegui a suspended sentence on Wednesday. Picture: Steve Poston

Stratford Magistrates' Court handed Maria Gallastegui a suspended sentence on Wednesday. Picture: Steve Poston

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An anti-arms trade campaigner who clambered onto vehicles arriving at one of the world’s largest weapons fairs has been let off with a suspended sentence.

Maria Gallastegui, 59, climbed onto a parked flatbed truck and a lorry to prevent military equipment reaching the Defence and Security Equipment International (DSEI) arms fair last September, Stratford Magistrates’ Court heard.

She was one of around 100 people arrested during protests against the biennial event at the ExCeL, which attracts lucrative arms sales and repressive regimes to Royal Docks.

Gallastegui, of Bouverie Road, Stoke Newington, was found guilty of two counts of tampering with a motor vehicle and one count of obstructing the highway last Wednesday.

She received a two-year suspended sentence and was ordered to pay £620 costs and a £20 victim surcharge.

She is the 14th of 40 protesters reported by the Recorder to be convicted for the peaceful protests.


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