Pax Christi trio found guilty3 September 2012
Three Catholic activists who wrote pacifist slogans on the wall of the Ministry Defence headquarters in London have been found guilty of causing criminal damage.
Dr Ray Towey (68), Henrietta Cullinan (50) and Katrina Alton (44) admitted to defacing the building in Whitehall but they denied intending to cause damage that the Ministry of Defence said amounted to £400.
Henrietta Cullinan told the court that they had used charcoal that they had blessed to write phrases including "Choose life" and "Repent" before being arrested. She said that the direct action, which took place on 2 April, had been a part of her Lenten observance. They were taking part in a peace vigil organised by Pax Christi.
District Judge Susan Williams said that the defendants' moral convictions did not amount to a lawful excuse for their participation in the protest. The three were granted unconditional discharge and were ordered to pay court fees of £200 each but were not ordered to pay compensation to the MOD. All three have said they will refuse to pay court fees, an action that may incur a custodial sentence.
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