[Note added 6.10.16: this post was originally published 20.7.16.]
I spent most of today in Westminster Magistrates’ Court. Last Saturday I received a summons to appear in the court at 09:30 today – giving me just two working days to obtain legal advice – in connection with my alleged obstruction of the highway during our anti-MGM protest in Parliament Square on 1 June. A video (14:52) is here, my arrest by a (Kiwi) policeman takes place soon after 13:30.
I registered my presence with the relevant person, and it was immediately clear something was amiss. At 11:30 – two hours after my arrival – I was informed the police / CPS hadn’t submitted any papers. Responding with lightning speed, at 15:30 the papers were made available, and I duly explained I’d be pleading ‘Not Guilty’ at the trial, and went through some tedious related form-filling.
Starting at 16:00 I spent some 10 minutes with the magistrate, the CPS prosecutor, and a legal expert. It surely goes without saying that no apology was forthcoming from the CPS for wasting most of my day.
I shall be representing myself – I’ll be pleading ‘Not Guilty’ – and cross-examining the two police persons (one man, one woman) at Hammersmith Magistrates’ Court. The trial will start at 10:00 on 12 October, and there will be spaces for the public to watch events. I hope to see some of you there, please email me (firstname.lastname@example.org) if you can make it. I need to enter the court by 9:30, but it would be good to meet with supporters outside the court building from 9:00. Thank you for your support.