Peaceful protestor has all charges withdrawn and now has a civil claim against the State

Police arrest peaceful protestor at climate change demonstration

peaceful protester demonstrationJohn* attended as a peaceful protestor at a demonstration to bring attention to contemporary climate change which includes both global warming and its impacts on Earth’s weather patterns. He was non-violent. The event was on both CCTV and Facebook live streams.

At the protest police arrested and charged John with:

  • wilfully prevent free passage of person/vehicle/vessel, pedestrian
  • obstruct driver’s/other pedestrian’s path,
  • disrupt, enter the Sydney Harbour Bridge

John then approached our firm for assistance as he believed that police should not have laid the charges against him.

Police withdraw charges

However, should John face criminal charges and penalties for peacefully protesting a critical matter?

After obtaining the Court Attendance Notice and police facts, our solicitor wrote representations to the police requesting that they withdraw all of the charges. The reasons that we requested the withdrawal is because John did not enter, remain on, climb, jump from or otherwise trespass on any public roads.

The police prosecutors examined our representations carefully and determined that they should withdraw all three charges.

John was happy with this outcome. We are also now also acting for him in a civil claim against the State of NSW (i.e., the NSW Police Force) for unlawful arrest and malicious prosecution.

*We have changed names to maintain confidentiality

You have the right to protest peacefully. If police arrest you and you need help, contact our civil rights lawyers today.

O’Brien Criminal & Civil Solicitors
p: 02 9261 4281
a: Level 4, 219-223 Castlereagh St,
Sydney NSW 2000

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