Trident Ploughshares Media | 20.03.2010 14:30 | Anti-militarism
The rock after re-decoration (Photo: Trident Ploughshares)
“On 22nd August 2009 at HMNB Clyde Sylvia Boyes and Mary Millington did without reasonable excuse, wilfully or recklessly destroy or damage the property belonging to another and did paint words on the rock there, damaging same. Contrary to the Criminal Law (Consolidation) (Scotland) Act 1995, Section 52(1) and (3)” The trial, which began on 4th March but had to be adjourned until Thursday, continued with the final prosecution witness taking the stand. It was then the turn of the two defendants to present their evidence. The Justice appeared to listen carefully as each of the women explained the motives for their action.
Dr Alan Mackinnon, Chair of Scottish CND, was then called as a witness for the defence. He gave evidence on the breadth of opposition to the renewal of Trident from the heads of Scottish churches, trade unions, the Scottish Parliament and Government, and the general public in Scotland, quoting facts and figures for each group. The Justice allowed him to present his evidence in full, even asking him to elaborate on certain points.
The Procurator Fiscal (PF) presented legal arguments relating to “vandalism” and “malicious mischief”. He also produced a copy of the Lord Advocate’s Reference relating to the legality of Trident. After his summing up, Ms Millington queried the wording of the charge, as it mentioned neither vandalism nor malicious mischief. There followed a semantics debate between the PF and the Justice. The PF then brought to the attention of the Court the Lord Advocate’s Reference and made reference to previous TP cases. Ms Boyes presented to the Justice Ellen Moxley’s response to the Lord Advocate’s ruling, as well as solicitor Phil Shiner’s legal argument against Trident replacement produced on behalf of Peacerights.
The Justice went on to deliver his verdict of Guilty against both defendants and fined them each £50. No orders for compensation were made for damage to the rock, which had been painted over rather than cleaned.
Trident Ploughshares will be back at Faslane with Faslane Peace Camp and others on Easter Saturday, 3rd April for the European Day of Action at nuclear weapons bases.
More details here: http://www.tridentploughshares.org/article1605
and here: http://www.indymedia.org.uk/en/2010/03/447340.html
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