The Brightlingsea 14

Writs and Injunctions served on Brightlingsea Protesters

23rd August 1995
From the Animal Protester's Bulletin.

Livestock exporter Roger Mills issued twelve Brightlingsea protesters with writs specifying that if they do anything directly or indirectly to harm his legal trade with regard to the exportation of live animals, they can be held accountable for damages which could run into enormous sums of money. He is also claiming damages for loss of income.

An injunction was served on the same 12 the following day to prevent them from demonstrating on the grounds that their action could be construed as causing indirect harm to Mr. Mill's business. BALE will be contesting this on the basis of their rights to legal protest being denied and civil liberties threatened. The injunction will be heard at the High Court in the Strand, London, on the 29th August.

Triumph for Brightlingsea 14!

22 September 1995
From the Animal Protester's Bulletin.

From Joe Allen:

After a stressful journey, 14 of us arrived ten minutes late at the High Court in London, to be greeted by a very large and welcoming crowd.

We proceeded to the courtroom to hear the Judge explain that he was opening up the rostrum so that the large volume of supporters could hear the trial.

Roger Mill's barrister, Mr. Jonathan Crystal, spent the entire morning explaining why injunctions should be granted to the Brightlingsea 14, who grew from 12 at the end of last week when Mills issued to further writs to Maria Wilby's husband and me. After reading our affidavits, the Judge, Mr. Justice Forbes, decided that he did not require evidence from our barrister.

At 1.10pm, the Judge adjourned the trial for an hour; at 2.10pm he returned to the court and gave his verdict. After a detailed account, the Judge announced that he would not be granting injunctions to 13 of the protesters. One injunction was granted to protester Andrew Abbott, as principal co-ordinator of the pledged sit-down demonstrations; because Andrew refused to recognise that he did not have the right to obstruct the highway, an injunction was granted to him.

Roger Mills has since claimed the day as a victory with just only one injunction being granted. The case is not over for the 14 of us, as Roger Mills only failed to grant injunctions to stop us demonstrating; he must now choose whether to continue proceedings to claim damages for loss to his business. However, although Mills has announced it is his intention to pursue the case, the large amount of money he has lost does pose questions as to whether he actually will.

Our thanks go to Joyce d'silva and Peter Stevenson of CIWF, Tony Banks MP, Carla Lane, and all the supporters for being there on the day and who gave their much needed and appreciated support.