TRIDENT PLOUGHSHARES

 Press Release: 17th June 2003

 LEGALITY OF IRAQ WAR TO BE ARGUED IN COURT

 A British Court will soon hear arguments on whether or not the Iraq war
was
 illegal, and therefore whether peace campaigners who damaged or attempted
 to damage military property at USAF/RAF Fairford in recent months, had
 lawful excuse to do so. On  20th June at Gloucester Crown Court the judge
 will set a date for hearing arguments on the legality of the war and the
 order of related trials of peace activists.

 This case has partly arisen because of, and is expected to directly affect
 the outcome of, the separate trials of Trident Ploughshares peace
 campaigners, Joss Garman, Margaret Jones and Paul Milling as well as the
 cases of nine other anti war activists (named below) which will be heard
in
 Gloucestershire courts over the next few months.

 Joss Garman will also be on trial in Harrogate Magistrates Court on 1st
and
 2nd July, facing a charge of criminal damage for damaging a perimeter
fence
 at Menwith Hill US Spy Base in Yorkshire on 1st February.

 In all of the cases, the protesters will argue that they had lawful excuse
 for their actions, because they were acting to prevent a greater crime.
 Also, on 24th June, the "Pit Stop Ploughshares" activists in Ireland will
 begin their trial for damaging a US Navy Plane at Shannon Airport in
February.

 Notes:

 IMPORTANT: Cirencester Magistrates Court has ruled that the press may not
 publish Joss Garman's name.

 The 12 defendants whose cases will be affected by June 20th decision are:
 Joss Garman and Sam Grafton (criminal damage, aggravated trespass, going
 equipped to cause criminal damage) Josh Richards (Going equipped to do
 criminal damage) Phil Pritchard and Toby Olditch (conspiracy and going
 equipped to cause criminal damage) Paul Milling and Margaret Jones
 (conspiracy and criminal damage), Kate Holcombe, Geoffrey Cornock and 3
 other people (criminal damage)

 On 3rd and 4th March 2003, 14 B52 bombers from USAF 23rd Bomb Squadron
 'Barons' arrived at USAF Fairford in Gloucestershire, UK, to prepare for
 the aerial bombing of Iraq, which began on 20th March 2003. On April 24th
 2003, after 142 flights and 54 days, they left.

 Iraq Body Count Latest (Civilian Iraqi Deaths): Minimum
 5534      Maximum       7202
 (see http://www.iraqbodycount.net/bodycount.htm)

 Contact:        Joss Garman     07815004578
 www.tridentploughshares.org   media@tridentploughshares.org