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

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Three fracking activists have had their sentences reduced to conditional discharges today in their appeal hearing at the Court of Appeal.

The custodial sentencing of three 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.

A fracking protester on top of a lorry in 2016

A fracking protester on top of a lorry in 2016

Three anti-fracking protesters were given custodial sentences on September 26, 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.”