Search

Nine found guilty of obstruction over ExCeL arms fair protests

PUBLISHED: 14:32 16 January 2018 | UPDATED: 14:32 16 January 2018

Anti-war activists protest last year's DSEI arms fair. Picture: CAAT

Anti-war activists protest last year's DSEI arms fair. Picture: CAAT

Campaign Against Arms Trade

Nine protesters were convicted in the opening trials in a series of court cases involving demonstrations against a major arms fair at the ExCeL.

More than 100 people were arrested last year after trying to prevent weapons and military equipment arriving in Royal Docks for the Defence and Security Equipment International (DSEI), one of the world’s largest gun shows.

Shoppers included many repressive regimes such as Saudi Arabia, who uses UK-made weapons in its brutal bombings in Yemen.

Charges against more than half of the activists were dropped, but 46 still face trial in the next two months.

“The UK arms and supports many of the most brutal regimes around the world,” said Andrew Smith of Campaign Against Arms Trade, who helped organise the protests.

“The arms being promoted could be used in atrocities for years to come,” he added.

“These campaigners were prepared to put their bodies on the line to stop it, and to say that enough is enough.”

The first two groups of demonstrators appeared at Stratford Magistrates’ Court last week, with nine of the 10 on trial found guilty of wilful obstruction of a highway.

Those ordered to each pay a £20 victim surcharge, £180 court costs and handed a six-month conditional discharge were: Guillaume Chome, 24, of Louvain-la-Neuve in Belgium; Matt Fawcett, 42, and Bryone Moore, 33, both of Rockdove Avenue, Manchester; Brigid-Mary Oates, 58, of Clydesdale Drive, Bradford; Margeret Bremner, 63, of Promenade, Edinburgh, and 66-year-old Barbera Cookson of Lawrence Grove in Liverpool.

Genevieve Scherer, 71, of Leppoc Road, Lambeth, and 66-year-old Angela Zelter of Knighton, Powys, received similar sentences with a smaller victim surcharge of £15.

Thomas Harford, 27, of Whiteway Road, Bristol, must pay a £100 fine, £30 victim surcharge and £180 costs.

The tenth defendent, Martin Prady, 41, of Martock, Somerset, was found not guilty.

“The demonstrators were exercising their right to freedom of speech and assembly by means of a ‘sustained, ethical, pacified protest’ to highlight the far-reaching and devastating impact of the arms trade,” said defending lawyer Raj Chada.

Latest Newham Stories

The club will look to maintain their long tradition of competing in the first round proper by winning at Maidstone on Saturday

Justin Edinburgh
14:30

Lakeside Hammers are gearing up for a massive weekend as their drama-filled season comes to a spectacular conclusion.

Richard Lawson

FA Youth Cup third qualifying round: AFC Rushden & Diamonds 2 Leyton Orient 3

Justin Edinburgh

At least two homeless people have died at the Stratford Centre this year, and eight across Newham - but no records exist of their deaths. Here, we tell their stories.

Newham Council

A man has been arrested after falling from the top floor of Westfield Shopping Centre in Stratford.

08:00

New York Knicks Frank Ntilikina is excited about playing a match in London as it will give his family and friends a chance to watch him play.

National Basketball Association

Unwanted furniture, fridges and other large household rubbish items could soon be collected for free if drastic plans to help stop fly-tipping in Newham are approved.

10:09

Four family members have been charged with modern slavery offences following dawn raids across east London.

Forest Gate

PROMOTED CONTENT

Hanson Fernandes’ journey began in 2015 when he arrived in London from Goa, India.

Newsletter Sign Up

Newham Recorder twice-weekly newsletter
Sign up to receive our regular email newsletter

Our Privacy Policy

Most read news

Show Job Lists

Education Promo

Digital Edition

cover

Enjoy the
Newham Recorder
e-edition today

Subscribe

Education and Training

cover

Read the
Education and Training
e-edition today

Read Now