74 people charged over Insulate Britain road-blocking protests

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Seventy-four people have been charged over Insulate Britain’s road-blocking protests.

Kent Police said the prosecutions relate to incidents on the M25 motorway and near the Port of Dover on several dates in September and October last year.

It is believed to be the first time criminal proceedings have been launched in relation to Insulate Britain activists.

They have previously only faced legal action in the civil courts, with several jailed for breaching injunctions.

There are 73 charges of public nuisance, 29 charges of obstruction and two charges of criminal damage to a police car.

The defendants have been summoned to attend hearings at Crawley Magistrates’ Court from April.

Nineteen people arrested in connection with the protests were released without charge.

Insulate Britain, an offshoot of Extinction Rebellion, wants the Government to insulate all UK homes by 2030 to cut carbon emissions.

It repeatedly blocked major roads between September and November, causing long traffic jams.

Activists often glued their hands to roads or each other to make it harder to remove them.

An investigation by the PA news agency found policing the protests cost taxpayers at least £4.3 million.

At one stage officers were deployed at every junction of the M25 in an attempt to stop the group.

A spokesperson for Insulate Britain said: “The cost-of-living catastrophe is causing misery for millions of people in this country. Our proposal is a massive part of the solution.

“Insulating Britain is also a huge part of the process of giving the UK energy security, which is obviously an important subject as we see war raging in Europe funded by fossil fuels.

“Oil and gas funds war and causes insecurity globally. The Government must halt all future fossil fuel licences immediately to give humanity a chance of survival. In order to stop fossil fuels we need to Insulate Britain.”

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