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Veterans blockade Faslane nuclear weapons base in Scotland

For TP | 14.06.2012 12:27 | Anti-Nuclear | Anti-militarism | World

Trident Ploughshares

Press Release
14 June 2012

Two Pensioners blockade Faslane

This morning two Trident Ploughshares activists sat in the road at the North Gate of Faslane Trident Submarine base, stopping any traffic from entering the base for 15 minutes as part of the Faslane Peace Camps call for 30 Days of Action.

For details of other actions to mark the anniversary, see:

Joy Mitchell, 79, from Berwick on Tweed and Joan Meredith, 82 from Malpas, Cheshire have taken action against nuclear weapons many times before.

Joy Mitchell said:

"I have to come and do my small part in disrupting the immoral and illegal work that goes on in this base. "

Joan Meredith said:

"To accuse us of Breaching the Peace when deployment of these indiscriminate weapons is allowed to continue unchallenged by the authorities is wrong."


Faslane Peace Camp was started in June 1982. Many hundreds of people have come there to protest about the continuing deployment of illegal and immoral nuclear weapons from the Clyde bases. The camp is calling for 30 days of action to mark the 30 years of resistance to nuclear weapons.

Contact the camp on 01436 820901 or 07511 793 227

Trident Ploughshares is a part of the international nuclear disarmament movement. Trident Ploughshares activists have pledged to disarm the UK Trident nuclear weapons system in a non-violent, open, peaceful, safe and fully accountable manner.

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16.06.2012 09:07

Joan and Joy were taken to Clydebank police station in Glasgow where they were processed and charged with Breach of the Peace (a different offence from Breach of the Peace in England and Wales).

They were told they had to appear at Dumbarton court the following day (Friday 15th) by 11.30am, but when they showed up, none of the paperwork was there. They were sent away again and told they will hear in due course from the court.


taken from Scottish Activists Legal Project

Breach of the Peace (BoP) is a very wide ranging offence, which you can be arrested for. Unlike in England, you can be convicted rather then just bound over. Sentence would usually be a small fine although (as it is a common law offence) there is no maximum sentence.

In theory, BoP requires conduct severe enough to cause alarm to ordinary people and threaten serious disturbance to the community. It should be conduct that is genuinely alarming and disturbing, in its context, to any reasonable person. It is clear that something substantially greater than mere irritation is involved. BoP cases also sometimes refer to breach of public order or a breaking of the social peace.

You can be convicted of BoP even if no-one present was actually alarmed, if any reasonable person would have been had they been there. People are often arrested for BoP for simply refusing to do what a police officer told them to do, but if all you have done is refuse to do what you’re told you shouldn’t be convicted. However, refusal to comply with a police request can be a substantial part of a BoP charge as long as there is other stuff as well (e.g. blocking the road).

In practice BoP is wide open to almost any interpretation. Some courts have consistently convicted for BoP people who merely sat peacefully in the road despite evidence of the good natured atmosphere and total lack of alarm even from the police witnesses.

no nukes


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