PROTESTORS who bought a fire engine from Aylesbury before spraying fake blood from it at the Treasury have been cleared of criminal damage.

Extinction Rebellion protestors Richard Garfitt-Mottram, 66, Molly Lipson, 29, Daniel Blackmore, 32, Liam Norton, 39, Cathy Eastburn, 56, and Joel Scott Halkes, 41 were cleared by a jury this week at Southwark Crown Court.

The group had bought the vehicle in Aylesbury before driving it to central London and spraying hundreds of litres of red dye at the Government building in Horse Guards Road, Westminster on October 3, 2019.

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It caused £16,000 worth of damage.

Bucks Free Press:

The fire engine was driven by Mark Ovland, 40, who admitted his involvement in the conspiracy and will be sentenced at a later date.

At the time of the incident, the campaigners said they aimed to highlight the inconsistency between the Government’s insistence that the UK is a world leader in tackling the climate emergency and its funding for fossil fuel exploration and carbon intensive projects.

At least 30 police officers surrounded the fire engine on the day while the protesters stood on top of it.

Following the incident, a Treasury spokesman said: “The UK is a world leader on climate change – having reduced its emissions by 42 per cent between 1990 and 2017, while growing the economy by more than two-thirds.

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“In June, we became the first major economy to legislate to end our contribution to global warming by 2050. We will continue to build on this proud record.”