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Acquittal For Insulate Britain Campaigner

Hodge Jones & Allen was delighted to represent Steven Gower in proceedings, before Horsham Magistrates Court, for his part in the Insulate Britain campaign in Nov 2021. Mr Gower took part in a peaceful non violent direct action on 21 September 2021, to highlight the dangers of fuel poverty, the link to the climate crisis and the failure of successive government to provide real solutions in the form of insulation for our homes.

Mr Gower, a long standing advocate and advisor to those at risk of homelessness, sat down on the M25 between junction 9 and 10 of the M25. He was removed from the road after 13.5 minutes. He was charged with an offence of obstruction of the highway and was acquitted after a two day trial at Horsham Magistrates Court.

According to fuel poverty charity, National Energy Action, 45 people die per day in England and Wales .

It is fitting that Mr Gower is acquitted as the Civicus Report published today refers to the UK becoming more authoritarian and intolerant of dissent.

Raj Chada who represented Mr Gower said “Mr Gower was rightly acquitted because a conviction would be a disproportionate interference with his right to free speech. Rather than clamping down on peaceful protestors, the Government should deal with the shame of a civilised society that is allowing people to die because they cannot afford to heat their homes.”

Raj Chada is Head of the Criminal Defence Team at Hodge Jones & Allen. He is one of the country’s leading defence lawyers.

Further Reading Falsely Accused of Crime