Fracking protesters’ sentencing was unlawful says Friends of the Earth as sentences over-turned

The Frack Free Three have had their sentences reduced to conditional discharges today in their appeal hearing at the Court of Appeal.
  17 Oct 2018    |      2 min

The custodial sentencing of three peaceful anti-fracking protesters had been ‘unlawful’ Friends of the Earth argued, as the environmental group intervened in their appeal hearing at the Court of Appeal.

Three anti-fracking protesters were given custodial sentences on 26 September 2018, with two receiving 16 months, and one 15 months. They were the first people jailed for environmental protest since the 1932 mass trespass of Kinder Scout.

Katie de Kauwe, lawyer at Friends of the Earth, said:

“Friends of the Earth intervened in this important case on the basis that these sentences were disproportionate. We are very pleased that the Court of Appeal has today found that the custodial sentences were manifestly excessive and quashed them. This is a great outcome. The Court thanked Friends of the Earth for its intervention and we are awaiting their full reasoning.”

Hydraulic fracturing, or fracking as it’s commonly known, is the controversial process of pumping a high-pressure mixture of chemicals and water into shale rock, ‘fracturing’ it to release gas. Fracking started in England this week, for the first time since a test attempt seven years ago resulted in earth tremors.

Across the country, people are calling on the government to respect local democracy and stop forcing fracking on communities