Auckland, 20 November, 2012 – Thursday’s sentencing of Lucy Lawless and seven other activists, arrested following the occupation of the Shell-chartered drillship the Noble Discoverer in New Plymouth in February, has been adjourned again.
This is the second time the sentencing of the eight activists has been postponed due to Shell not providing the required information, in time, for its reparation claim of around $700,000 from the activists. The original sentencing date was September 14. A new date has yet to be confirmed.
Seven of the activists climbed the drilling tower of the Noble Discoverer on February 24, while it was moored in Port Taranaki. All were arrested after a 77-hour occupation of the tower. An eighth activist was arrested on the first day of the operation.
Greenpeace New Zealand Executive Director Bunny McDiarmid says Shell’s reparation claim is totally unjustified, given that the activists acted out of a moral duty.
“Along with the activists we drew the world’s attention to Shell’s plans for this hostile, yet fragile environment, in which an oil spill would be impossible to clean up.
“Since then it’s been exposed that Shell’s emergency response plan was hopelessly inadequate and failed when tested before the company gave up on drilling in the Arctic for this northern summer.
“The activists are not alone. Since they delayed the Noble Discoverer, back in February, more than two and a half million people have signed a petition calling on Shell to abandon its plans for the Arctic.”