Protesters in orange hi-vis vests sit in a road in the right of the image. In the left a large 4x4 car is seen approaching the protesters.

Bristol Just Stop Oil activists found guilty

Two Bristolians have been charged at Westminster Magistrates’ Court for their role in a Just Stop Oil action in Holborn, London, on October 21, 2022. 

One of the two charged was Reverend Sue Parfitt, 80, a veteran activist who has been arrested multiple times with Just Stop Oil, Insulate Britain, Extinction Rebellion and other groups. Parfitt was ordered to pay a £300 fine and £200 court costs.

The other was Imogen Sibona, a 64-year-old mother of three from Easton, who was given a 12-month conditional discharge and ordered to pay £226 court costs.

A woman sits in the road holding a banner that reads "Just Stop Oil"
Parfitt sat in the road in Holborn, London, during the protest in October 2022.

Following the verdict Sibona, a children’s cycling instructor and ESOL English teacher, said: ‘I now have a criminal record for demanding that our government act in the interests of ordinary people – not their friends in big oil. They are ignoring advice from the United Nations, IPCC, and the International Energy Agency, and millions will pay the price with their lives. We all know who the real criminals are. 

Parfitt said: ‘Being found guilty will have no impact on my need to continue to follow God’s calling to resist the evil of climate breakdown any way I can.’

Read more: Local activists acquitted for Insulate Britain protest

Parfitt and Sibona were amongst ten activists to appear in Westminster Magistrates’ Court this week all charged with obstruction of the highway for peacefully blocking the road at Holborn junction on 21st October 2022. 

Amongst the other defendants were Adam Beard, a gardener from Stroud, and Greg Dring, a retired clinical psychologist from Bath. 

A Just Stop Oil spokesperson said: ‘In moments of emergency, we must stand up and be brave, we must stand up for good over evil, life over death, right over wrong. Just Stop Oil is calling on everyone to pick a side. We need everyone to get off the sidelines and join in civil resistance against new oil and gas.

‘The time is now. Our indefinite campaign of civil resistance is underway and will not end until our government ends new oil, gas and coal. Join Just Stop Oil on a slow march at midday every Saturday, at Parliament Square until we win.’

Just Stop Oil  is demanding that the government halt licensing and consents for the development of any new UK fossil-fuel projects.

Feature image: Just Stop Oil.

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