By Brian Melley, The Associated Press on February 2, 2024.
LONDON (AP) – A judge on Friday acquitted climate activist Greta Thunberg of a charge that she had refused to leave a protest that blocked the entrance to a major oil and gas industry conference in London last year.
Thunberg was acquitted along with four other defendants. Judge John Law said there were “significant deficiencies in the evidence” presented against Thunberg and the others to back charges that they had breached the Public Order Act during the Oct. 17 incident
Law said the police could have taken less restrictive measures, didn’t properly define where protesters should move and the order to disperse that was given was “so unclear that it was unlawful” that those who didn’t comply committed no offense.
The Swedish environmentalist, who inspired a global youth movement demanding stronger efforts to fight climate change, was charged in Westminster Magistrates’ Court with violating the act that allows police to impose limits on public assemblies. She had faced a fine of up to 2,500 pounds ($3,190) if she had been convicted.
Thunberg, 21, was among more than two dozen protesters arrested on Oct. 17 after preventing access to a hotel during the Energy Intelligence Forum, attended by some of the industry’s top executives.