The shocking murders of George Floyd and Breonna Taylor at the hands of police in the USA sparked protests and marches in support of the Black Lives Matter movement all over the world in the summer months of 2020.
On 7 June 2020, one BLM protest in Bristol captured imaginations and headlines as a bronze memorial statue to the 17th-century slave trader Edward Colston was pulled down and later dumped in Bristol harbour. It was thrown in the water near Pero’s Bridge – named in honour of an enslaved man. Since then the statue has been retrieved by the council and will be displayed in the city museum with placards from the Black Lives Matter protest
Only one arrest was made at the time, however, a group of people have subsequently been charged with criminal damage.
Raj Chada, Head of Criminal Defence at social-justice law firm Hodge Jones & Allen has made the following statement on behalf of three of the defendants:
“Our clients regret that they have been charged with this offence. We note that proceedings are now ongoing and as a result they cannot speak further about the matter. We ask that their privacy is respected.”
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