Tuesday, June 8, 2010

Acquittals after group entered arms manufacturers in Derry to damage equipment



Northern Ireland Nine acquitted at Raytheon trial

Published: 4th Jun 2010 16:10:03




Northern Ireland


Protesters blocked the entrance to Raytheon in January 2009

Nine women have been acquitted of breaking into an arms manufacturing company to cause criminal damage.


The women were part of a group who protested at the Raytheon offices in Londonderry in January 2009.


However, James King, 67, of Hatmore Park, Derry, was found guilty of criminal damage and intent to cause criminal damage.


Kieran Gallagher, 44, from Dunservick Park, was convicted of impersonating a police officer.


The jury at Belfast Crown Court deliberated for an hour on Friday.


The women acquitted were 35-year-old Julia Torrojo from Glenside Gardens, Roisin Barton, 61, from Brandywell Avenue, 54-year-old Goretti Horgan from Westland Avenue, Elizabeth Doherty, 52, from the Little Diamond, 65-year-old Diana King from Hatmore Park, 61-year-old Helen Reynolds from Fahan Street and Roisin Bryce, 42, from Ardnomoyle Park, all in Derry.


Two women from the Irish Republic were also on trial - 35-year-old Sharron Meenan from Dameragh, Fahan, and 52-year-old Jackie McKenna from Sliabhan, Killarogue.


Mr Gallagher was given an 12-month conditional discharge, and Mr King was fined £75 with an £80 compensation order for cleaning the wall he sprayed with paint.


On Tuesday, the court heard there was not enough evidence to convict Rory McDermott, 26, John McMonagle, 65, and Bernard McFadden, 56, all from Derry.


Judge Tom Burgess told the jury he would be directing them to acquit the men of the charges they faced.


'War crimes'


During the trial, the court heard that after the women were arrested and released, each of the women attended voluntarily to be interviewed by police, and that during police questioning, all of them admitted to breaking into Raytheon in order to cause damage to the main computer server.


The women claimed they had done so in order to protect the lives and property of people in the Gaza Strip and to stop alleged war crimes being committed by the Israeli forces.


Speaking outside court on Friday a spokesperson for the group said they were "grateful to the jury and proud of ourselves".


"The verdict represents an acceptance that what we did was not a crime but an attempt to prevent crime, a crime against humanity which continues to be inflicted on the people of Gaza by the Israeli defence forces."


It is not the first time people accused of trying to cause criminal damage to the Raytheon offices have been acquitted.


In 2008, six people, including journalist Eamonn McCann, were found not guilty. They were charged following a protest at Raytheon in August 2006.


Source:BBC NewsExternal LinkShow Citation

Harvard CitationBBC News, 2010. Nine acquitted at Raytheon trial. [Online] (Updated 04 Jun 2010)




© 2010 All Rights Reserved.


Tuesday, June 8, 2010, 5:30 AM


From this weekend's edition of "NONVIOLENT NEWS", produced by INNATE (Irish

Network for Nonviolent Action Training and Education) in Belfast...


Derry Raytheon 14 trial - acquittals again


Despite two men being found guilty of minor miscellaneous charges, there was

another great victory for Derry Raytheon protesters and for opposition to

the arms trade when all nine women charged were acquitted by a jury at

Belfast Crown Court on 4th June after a trial spread out over 3 weeks.


Raytheon already left Derry before the end of February this year and the

trial related to an action in January 2009 (see NN 178) - with a similar

result this time to the June 2008 trial of 9 men for an action at Raytheon

plant in Derry in August 2006. Three men had been acquitted earlier in the

week due to lack of evidence. The two convictions were for `impersonating a

police officer' and the other for `criminal damage' (spray painting) - the

last charge, ironically, applied to a veteran street actor.






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