Kent

Extinction Rebellion climate activists admit obstructing highway

One of the men arrested during the climate protest
Image caption A number of protesters were taken away in a police van after being arrested

Three climate activists have been sentenced for obstructing a highway during a protest near Dover port.

Tobias Jackson, 48, Jessica Luby, 38 and Luke Mallett, 22, took part in an Extinction Rebellion blockade of part of the A20 on 21 September.

They had been due to stand trial for disobeying police but at Folkestone Magistrates' Court no evidence was offered and the charges were dismissed.

All three pleaded guilty instead to wilful obstruction of the highway.

Jackson, of Victoria Avenue, Hastings; Luby of Lower Park Road, Hastings and Mallett of Whitstable Road, Canterbury, were each given a 12-month conditional discharge.

Food shortage fears

Extinction Rebellion said the "No Food on a Dying Planet" protest centred around the potential for food shortages as climate change develops.

During the demonstration, protesters occupied one side of the dual carriageway amid a heavy police presence.

They had been told they could demonstrate in a cordoned-off area on the westbound side, but risked arrest if they tried to block eastbound lanes used by lorries to access ferries.

On Thursday, a 91-year-old man was among three people found guilty at Folkestone Magistrates' Court of failing to comply with police orders during the protest.

On 13 November, another protester, Ronald West, 67, of South Way in Lewes, admitted failing to comply with police orders and was given a conditional discharge of 24 months.

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