POLITICS

Caroline Lucas Found Not Guilty Over Anti-Fracking Protest

17/04/2014 15:05 BST | Updated 17/04/2014 15:59 BST
Gareth Fuller/PA Wire
Green Party MP Caroline Lucas arrives at Brighton Magistrates' Court where she faces two charges of wilful obstruction of the highway and breaching section 14 of the Public Order Act following her arrest at the height of the anti-fracking protests outside energy firm Cuadrilla's exploratory oil drilling site on the outskirts of Balcombe on August 19 last year.

Britain's only Green MP has vowed to continue her fight to end fracking after being found not guilty of obstructing a public highway and a public order offence during high-profile protests.

The Brighton Pavilion MP was arrested outside energy company Cuadrilla's exploratory oil drilling site in Balcombe, West Sussex, last August 19.

She was among a group of protesters who had linked arms outside the site, which had become a national focal point for anti-fracking protests.

During the trial at Brighton Magistrates' Court alongside four co-defendants, Lucas, 53, said she "wanted to express solidarity" by protesting peacefully.

She was found not guilty of the two charges she faced - wilful obstruction of a public highway and breaching an order under Section 14 of the Public Order Act.

Outside court, she said: "We are pleased that the court upheld our right to peacefully protest against fracking, but this judgment is not a victory or cause for celebration.

"We will continue to campaign to end fracking and only celebrate when our world is on the path to a clean energy future."