Six individuals who were part of the Just Stop Oil protest group have been sentenced for their involvement in a track invasion during the 2022 Formula 1 British Grand Prix.

There are four men and two women in the group who were found guilty of causing a public nuisance in February. The prosecutors argued that their actions posed a serious risk of harm to themselves and some of the individuals sat on the Silverstone track as F1 cars raced past. However, the group claimed to have assessed the risks involved in their protest.

At the Northampton Crown Court, Judge Neil Garnham who presided over the case stated that they were “kidding themselves” to think they had the necessary expertise to do so. He also said that the protestors had a “genuine and deeply held belief” that there was a climate emergency, which motivated their actions.

The six defendants were sentenced to a mix of suspended prison terms and community orders.

Louis McKechnie and Emily Brocklebank, who had previously been convicted for glueing themselves to a Van Gogh painting, were among the defendants.

McKechnie was sentenced to 12 months in prison, suspended for two years, and 60 hours of unpaid work, while Brocklebank received a suspended prison sentence of six months.

The other defendants were also given community orders or suspended prison terms. Bethany Mogie receiving a suspended prison sentence of 6 months, was pictured outside the court with a large camping-style rucksack on her back. Alasdair Gibson and Joshua Smith were given a 12-month community order including 120 hours of unpaid work. David Baldwin was sentenced to a 12-month community order.

Footage shown at the trial revealed F1 drivers Yuki Tsunoda and Esteban Ocon passing the protestors, who were either sitting on or being dragged off the track on 3 July 2022.

Victoria Lindsell, who spoke on behalf of Just Stop Oil, expressed relief at the “lenient sentences” handed down to the protestors. She argued that the judge recognised that ordinary people were trying to protect the future of humanity and that the sentences were therefore fair.

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