Update: the sentences of all three men have been quashed on appeal as 'manifestly excessive'
“This won’t break us, we will come out stronger. Some may view us as victims, but we refuse to be victimised by this. The real victims will be future generations suffering preventable disasters caused by climate change. Our friends and fellow campaigners outside will continue to fight for a ban on fracking and for a just transition to a renewable and democratically owned energy system” - Roscoe Blevins
In July 2017 a convoy of lorries delivering drilling equipment to the Preston New Road fracking site was spontaneously brought to a halt by protestors. Four men took the opportunity to climb up on top of the cabs of the lorries and between them stayed in occupation for 99 and a half hours, supported by supplies from locals.
On Wednesday 26 September, three of the men were sentenced to prison for this peaceful protest. Roscoe Blevins and Richard Roberts received 16 months immediate custodial sentences. Richard Loizou received 15 months immediate custodial sentences. They can expect to serve half of this time in jail. The rest on licence.
Julian Brock also received 12 months suspended custodial sentence.
The harshness of these sentences can only be seen as a desperate attempt to quell dissent and protest by an industry that faces increasing public resistance. The defendants were not allowed to speak in court about the reasons for their actions.