|Heathrow 13 outside the Court|
District Judge Deborah Wright during the trial of the Plane Stupid activists known as the Heathrow 13 admitted that they were 'people of integrity concerned about climate change' but told them they should expect a custodial sentence despite their previous good character.
Judge Wright has been involved in other cases where she has referred to the good character of the accused.
Sentencing former Conservative Mayor of Barnet and ex-GLA member Brian Coleman in May 2013 Judge Wright said the “well-known politician” was a man of “previous good character” who had made significant contributions to society.
Coleman had attacked a cafe owner who was filming him parking illegally. LINK
In 2006 sentencing a policeman who beata man up while on duty and assaulted another when off duty she said he would have been jailed had it not been for an "exemplary character reference" from his former employers. LINK
Neither case involved selfless action seeking a safe environment for future generations.
After the trial verdict Plane Stupid said:
Judge Wright will sentence the Heathrow 13 on February 24th at Willesden Magistrates Court and are likely to have many supporters outside expressing solidarity.Today’s judgment demonstrates that the legal system does not yet recognise that climate defence is not an offence. We took action because we saw that it was sorely needed. When the democratic, legislative and processes have failed, it takes the actions of ordinary people to change them.