Northwood Die-in Six "guilty"

IssueDecember 2009 - January 2010
News by Gabriel Carlyle

On 5 November, six of us – Katrina Alton and Steve Barnes of the London Catholic Worker, PN columnist Maya Evans, PN co-editor Milan Rai, Trident Ploughshares co-founder Angie Zelter, and myself – were found guilty of causing “serious disruption to the community” for our role in the “Die-in for NATO’s Victims in Afghanistan” at Britain’s military nerve centre at Northwood earlier this year.

During the trial in Watford, chief inspector Dempsey-Brench conceded that he had not issued a legal Section 14 order under the Public Order Act. Nonetheless, the district judge ruled that he had issued the s14 order, without knowing it!

On the second day, the focus shifted to Afghanistan, and the unreasonableness of police restrictions on the protest.

There was invaluable support from Watford and Hemel Hempstead Quakers, and the Oxford and London Catholic Workers.

All six have refused to pay the £355 fines and costs imposed.