Extinction Rebellion co-founder charged over Heathrow drone plot

‘Airport expansion constitutes a crime against humanity,’ says Roger Hallam

Jon Sharman
Monday 16 September 2019 18:22 BST
A plane is seen on approach to Heathrow airport, where expansion is subject to protest
A plane is seen on approach to Heathrow airport, where expansion is subject to protest (Toby Melville/Reuters)

A co-founder of the Extinction Rebellion (XR) protest group declared Heathrow expansion “a crime against humanity” as he appeared in court charged with attempting to cause disruption there using a drone.

Roger Hallam was arrested near Britain’s busiest airport on Saturday.

Supporters applauded as he entered the dock at Uxbridge Magistrates’ Court on Monday wearing a grey jumper over an orange, white and black striped shirt.

The 53-year-old faces one charge of conspiring to cause a public nuisance between 1 August and 14 September, namely conspiring with others to fly drones near Heathrow “in order to cause widespread disruption”.

Mr Hallam had been on police bail when he was detained at the weekend, with conditions including not being near the airport or possessing drone equipment, the court heard.

The action was part of ongoing protest activity by his climate change campaign group.

A splinter group of XR, called Heathrow Pause, had attempted to interrupt flights by flying drones in the 5km exclusion zone around the runways.

No pleas were entered during the brief hearing and the case will next be heard at Isleworth Crown Court on 14 October.

Mr Hallam, of Putney Bridge Road in Wandsworth, spoke to confirm his name, date of birth, and that he is a British citizen.

Asked if he would like to add anything, he said: “Heathrow expansion constitutes a crime against humanity, against the next generation.”

No bail application was made and Mr Hallam was remanded in custody.

Additional reporting by Press Association

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