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From: "Heather" (banners@clara.net)
Subject: TP2000 JAILED
Date: Fri, 21 Aug 1998 22:04:42 +0100

TP2000 arrests (Faslane)

Australian Nuclear Disarmer in Scottish Jail Hi-8 video footage and still shots of Jens outside of court house (church), and of his previous action available

Jens Light is being held in remand in Greenock Prison, Scotland, until a court appearance on September 22nd on the charge of 'Malicious Mischief', after having entered the Faslane nuclear weapons submarine site through a hole he had helped to cut in the fence.

He did not accept bail conditions for the charge because he regarded his previous actions (such as walking through the front gates of the Faslane nuclear submarine base to attempt to see the Acting Commanding Officer) as an attempt to uphold international law. However the court did not clarify that it recognised international law in this case and that therefore these would be considered offences under Scottish law.

His sister, Anja, agreed to the bail conditions after pleading not guilty to the charge. Their case, along with Trident Ploughshares 2000 coordinator Angie Zelter, will be heard on September 22nd, 1998.

According to a statement before being taken to jail, Jens said: "I go to jail now, sad about my loss of freedom but comfortable with my conscience. Although I didn't expect to disarm Trident, I hope that my actions will contribute the Trident nuclear system and all nuclear weapons including those in India and Pakistan being abolished before any nuclear weapons are used again. I feel particularly concerned as an Australian that we are part of the nuclear fuel cycle and that we sit 'uncomfortably' under the US and British nuclear umbrella. The nature of nuclear weapons is that if they are used anywhere their impact is global. I take this action for myself - so that in the near future I can, with my family, friends, humanity and all life, share a nuclear free world. I hope and pray that we are already on the brink of a nuclear free world. I feel the sophistication of conventional weaponry make nuclear weapons redundant.

His sister, Anja Light says: "Jens is a prisoner of conscience. He has been locked up while attempting, peacefully and responsibly, to prevent crimes of unimaginable magnitude. It is an action I believe each of us wish we had the courage to carry out. I hope that all Australians support him and the continuing actions of the Trident Ploughshares 2000 activists in whatever way they can."

* * * * * * * * * * * * * * *

This is the court news reporters account of the proceedings at Helensburgh: District Court (which had to be held in a church hall) published in a local newspaper.

>UNUSUAL GOINGS ON AT MAKESHIFT COURT
>
>A church kitchen was converted into a police cell on Monday during one of
>the most bizarre court hearings in Scottish legal history.
>The hall of St Micheal's Episopal Church in Helensburgh was the venue for a
>special sitting of the town's district court.
>The session was convened to deal with a group of people arrested over the
>weekend at an anti-nuclear protest near the naval base at Coulport.
>The court normally sits in the town's Victoria Halls, but because they are
>being refurbished  [actually an art exhibition], the nearby church was
>deployed - and the kitchen was the only room available for the police to
>hold the accused.
>Equally unorthodox were the scenes in the makeshift public gallery, sited
>on one half of the badmington court.
>Minutes before before proceeedings began just three seats were allocated to
>spectators - but when more than 50 supporters of the accused turned up,
>police launched a frantic search for more chairs.
>
>ONLOOKERS
>
>Officers found another pile elsewhere in the church - but not enough. And
>several onlookers were forced to sit on the wooden floor, some of them
>barefoot.
>Flouting all normal courtroom rules, punnets of strawberries and packets of
>crisps were passed freely round the audience as the hearing progressed -
>while several others sat cross-legged indulging in the art of origami.
>Among the six people who were sent for trial on a variety of charges
>including vandalism and breach of the peace, was a 30-year old Swedish
>priest and two countrymen.
>The reverend Hans Fredrick Ivarrson, along with Hans Joelson and Klaus
>Bognier, both 30, denied cutting the wire fence surrounding the base. They
>were released on bail and ordered to return for trial in March next year.
>
>DENIED
>
>Helen John of Yorkshire, Sylvia Boyce of Birmingham and Angie Zelter of
>Norfolk also denied a string of  public order offences and will be tried in
>January.
>Initially Boyce and Zelter were remanded in custody when they refused to
>accept a condition of bail that ordered them not to go within 25 metres of
>either Coulport or the submarine base at Faslane.
>After debate with fiscal Ann McAllister, however, magistrate Tony Stirling
>JP, withdrew the stipulation.
>He told the accused "By refusing to accept the condition I would have no
>alternative but to remand you in custody until your trial. The problem is
>that no date is available for another hearing within 40 days.
>When the nature of charges are taken into account, it would be iniquitous
>to keep you in custordy for that length of time - because it would be
>longer that the sentence I would have the power to impose should you have
>pleaded guilty."
>
>Note: The report doesn't include the presense of 9 year old Ben and 12 year
>old Sam in the court, or Helen John telling the court she was off to cut
>the fence - a completely surreal experience.
* * * * * * * * * * * * * * *

PRESS BRIEFING 15 Friday, August 21, 1998 17.00h

COURT CRACKDOWN ON PLOUGHSHARES ACTIVISTS

4 activists were remanded today in custody for between 5-32 days after breaking into the nuclear submarine bases at Faslane and Coulport. One French peace activist was fined 50.00 today for singing outside the gates of Coulport.

Angie Zelter, Jens Light and Anja Light, were arrested yesterday morning after cutting through Faslane's high security fence. In order to remove them the MOD brought in heavy machinery to cut down their own fence. Angie and Jens are remanded until September 22. Anja has been released on bail. Jens and Anja are siblings and have come over from Australia to join the Trident Ploughshares campaign.

At the Coulport site in the early hours this morning Sylvia Boyes and Rachel Wenham were arrested inside the base. Both women have been refused bail and are being remanded for five days.

It is noteworthy that 3 Swedish activists who appeared in court yesterday were released on bail in spite of two previous alleged breaches of bail, underlining the inconsistencies of the court's actions.

The activists are part of the Trident Ploughshares peace camp at Coulport. Before being arrested Sylvia said: 'I am going to continue my disarmament actions in order to uphold international law because a crime is being committed against humanity. If the government won't disarm Trident it's up to responsible citizens to uphold the law.'

Angie Zelter is one of the Ploughshares women who disabled the Hawk jet in Warton, Lancashire which was bound for Indonesia two years ago, and was acquitted with three other women by a Liverpool court.

Serge Levillayer, a retired schoolteacher from Cherbourg in France was today fined 50.00 for breaching the peace. He was singing at a morning vigil outside the gates of Coulport, continuing his tradition of holding a vigil every Friday outside a construction yard in Cherbourg where nuclear submarines are built.

Trident Ploughshares 2000
42-46 Bethel Street
Norwich
Norfolk NR2 1NR

tel + 44 (0) 1603 611953
fax + 44 (0) 1603 666879

permanent office: reforest@gn.apc.org
TP2000 camp office: tp2000@gn.apc.org

http://www.gn.apc.org/tp2000/
http://www.motherearth.org/


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