FIVE Christian activists who staged a sit-in at an arms fair
last year were all found not guilty earlier this month, after being
charged under the Criminal Justice and Public Order Act (1994).
Last September, Dan Woodhouse, a Methodist trainee minister, and
Chloe Skinner, Chris Wood, James Clayton, and Symon Hill, were
arrested at the Defence and Security Equipment International arms
fair at the ExCeL Centre in East London. They had blocked an
entrance while praying and singing hymns (News, 13
A judge at Stratford Magistrates Court found all five defendants
not guilty, after ruling that they had a "reasonable excuse",
because they had not had a clear understanding of the police
instructions to move.
"We were given confused and contradictory instructions by police
about where we could and couldn't go, and the legal basis for our
removal," Mr Hill (pictured, right, centre) said.
After hearing the verdict, Mr Wood said that he was "shocked and
relieved. . . Christians of multiple and various denominations have
united beside us in affirming out position, recognising that . .
.we are speaking out against a system we see as inherently violent
and destructive, and contradicting the gospel message of peace and