Insulate Britain: protester vows to block motorway again if not jailed.
Ben Taylor told the Superior Court that if he is not jailed for violating a court order prohibiting disruptive protests on the roads, he will “go and block the highway” as soon as possible. However, he added: “If you somehow manage to stop all non-violent protests, then things will only turn violent.”
He promised to continue with the interruption until the government “makes a meaningful statement and acts accordingly.” Taylor added: “If you send me to prison, ten people will step up in my place.”
Another activist, Oliver Roc, 41, said: “We have been told that we are very likely to receive prison sentences, so it is very likely that I am in a prison cell somewhere.
“I feel terrified, I’m fucking myself up, and I want to cry. I just had all these emotions coming out of me.” However, he added that he has no regrets and argued that the government must “go ahead” with the isolation of Britain’s houses.
He said: “It seems ridiculous that we are in this situation when what we are asking the Government is extremely practical.”
Climate change activists from Insulate Britain appeared in court yesterday for violating High Court court orders to avoid disruptive protests. They caused chaos in the last two months, blocking the M25, the roads around Parliament and in Birmingham, Manchester, and Dover.
Lawyers representing National Highways told the court yesterday that all nine admit to the infractions, although two have asked the agency to drop an indictment related to the ban on refusing to leave the road when asked to do so by police or officials.
Ana Heyatawin, 58, Ben Taylor, 27, Dr. Benjamin Buse, 36, Emma Smart, 44, James Thomas, 47, Louis McKechnie, 20, Oliver Roc, 41, Roman Paluch-Machnik, 28, and Tim Speers, 36, They are all expected to be sentenced this morning.
All could be jailed for up to two years in contempt of court for violating Superior Court court orders. They also face unlimited fines. So far, the High Court has issued five injunctions to prevent protesters from blocking roads. Insulate Britain activist Emma Smart told the court that she is there “to ensure future survival.”
The hearing, before Dame Victoria Sharp and Judge Chamberlain, continues today.