After over 24 hours in custody Theo Simon of Shepton Mallet, and David Jesse of Taunton, appeared before Taunton Deane Magistrates court. Officials were stunned by the packed courtroom as well-wishers and supporters packed into the room to follow the proceedings, one official commented that “this was the most people we've ever seen here”.
Magistrates, after taking into consideration the time they'd spent in custody decided to release the defendants with just a conditional discharge, and no fines or court costs as they accepted that the defendants were men of good character and that they had been engaged in a legitimate peaceful protest for the last two and a half weeks.
The defendent's solicitor told the protestors outside the court that the police hadn't favoured a night time eviction, but despite this EDF pulled the eviction time forward from the scheduled 7:30am to just before daybreak, said Shana Deal “ EDF are trying their hardest to keep local opposition from becoming visible not content with stitching up the legal processes they want to silence protest too. We are pleased that twice this week the courts of our land have upheld and respected our right to voice dissent at EDFs plans.”
Defendant Theo Simon commented on his release “This was just one battle in the fight against new nuclear we'll be back on March the 10th & 11th with Stop New Nuclear to surround and blockade Hinkley Point, we're not going anywhere until EDF and the government get the message that nuclear power is not clean not safe and not necessary”.