Man, 21, chained him­self to bath in Extinction Rebellion protest

Gloucestershire Echo - - NEWS - Daniel CHIPPERFIE­LD & Sa­muel PORT

AYOUNG man from Chel­tenham who chained him­self to a bath­tub on a ma­jor road in Bris­tol caus­ing hours of dis­rup­tion, along with a group of fel­low protesters, has been found guilty of ob­struct­ing a high­way.

El­liott Cu­ci­urean, 21, be­lieved to be the first cli­mate ac­tivist suc­cess­fully pros­e­cuted over the Extinction Rebellion protests in Lon­don, was again ar­rested and taken to court over protests car­ried out on July 17.

On the day he was ar­rested, the group were filmed walk­ing onto New­found­land Street in Bris­tol city cen­tre, at the junc­tion with Tem­ple Way at the end of the M32, just be­fore 7am.

They chained them­selves to a pink bath­tub us­ing a sys­tem of tubes, cara­bin­ers and metal chains and had to be freed by a spe­cial­ist protest re­moval team.

The dis­rup­tion lasted for more than eight hours.

Cu­ci­urean, of Dorset Av­enue in Chel­tenham, was found guilty of ob­struct­ing a high­way fol­low­ing a trial at Bris­tol Mag­is­trates’ Court, along with Imo­gen Phillips, 20, of Warsash in Southamp­ton; Chris­telle Blun­den, 37, of Tre­mona Road in Southamp­ton and Ti­mothy Miller, 37, of Im­pe­rial Av­enue in Southamp­ton.

All four were given a 12-month con­di­tional dis­charge on Septem­ber 19 and told to pay court costs be­tween £180 and £250.

Chief In­spec­tor Mark Ru­nacres said: “The de­lib­er­ate ac­tions of these protesters di­rectly led to lengthy de­lays on the M32, caus­ing ma­jor dis­rup­tion to the pub­lic.

“Through­out the Extinction Rebellion protests in July, our in­ten­tion was to work with the organisers to al­low peace­ful and law­ful protests to take place, but we were very clear on what we would not tol­er­ate.

“The ac­tion they took on Wed­nes­day, July 17, crossed the line and we took im­me­di­ate ac­tion.

“We had to call on spe­cial­ist po­lice re­sources and equip­ment to re­move the protesters from the bath­tub and this op­er­a­tion lasted around four hours.

“The true cost to mem­bers of the pub­lic caught up in the re­sult­ing dis­rup­tion will never be known. How­ever, it’s in­evitable that ac­tion like this has the po­ten­tial to re­sult in un­fore­seen con­se­quences which can have a sig­nif­i­cant im­pact on peo­ple’s lives.”

Eight peo­ple pre­vi­ously found guilty of ob­struct­ing a high­way fol­low­ing tri­als on Septem­ber 9 and 11 were also sen­tenced. They had glued them­selves to the road and bath­tub dur­ing the same protest.

All were also given 12-month con­di­tional dis­charges and told to pay court costs. Oth­ers sen­tenced were:

» He­len Miller, 42, of Im­pe­rial Av­enue, Southamp­ton

» John Boxshall, 51, of Lower Church Road, We­ston-su­per-mare

» Sue Jones, 54, of Creech St Michael, Taun­ton

» Madeleine Wake­l­ing, 22, of Ham Street, Glas­ton­bury

» Theo Gar­fath-gibelin, 24, of no fixed ad­dress » Klau­dia Van Gool, 54, of Corn­wall

» Me­lanie Phelps, 55, of Beach Road, Kew­stoke

» Ben Mis­rahi, 23, of West End, Stroud Two oth­ers, Michael Jones, 54, of Har­ber­ton, Totnes and Jane Augs­burger, 54, of Sum­mer Street, Stroud ad­mit­ted the of­fence of ob­struct­ing a high­way and re­ceived an 11-month con­di­tional dis­charge.

They were also told to pay court costs.

El­liott Cu­ci­urean

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