Belfast Telegraph

Protesters choose jail over paying court fines

Nationalist residents who failed to overturn convictions for staging sit-down protests at an Orange Order parade have vowed to go to jail rather than pay fines.

Appeals by eight men found guilty of obstructing lawful activity in public were dismissed at Belfast County Court.

Fines of £400 had been imposed on each of them for blocking a main road at Ardoyne in the north of the city during the Twelfth of July march in 2010.

Some were also convicted of resisting arrest and handed additional £200 penalties.

Judge Derick Rodgers threw out the appeals after rejecting all grounds of challenge.

Damien Fennell (30) of Linden Gardens, Belfast, who was one of those found guilty of obstruction, said: “We will be continuing to oppose unwanted loyal order parades through our area.”

“All of the appellants here today will be refusing to pay their fines.

“We are willing to go to jail to demonstrate our opposition to these parades through our area.”

Belfast Telegraph

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