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LIVE: Police at Glenugie blockade as drill rigs move in

A man is forced out of the line by police as they move people back along the avenue as the road is closed around the Glenugie CSG site. Photo Adam Hourigan / The Daily Examiner
A man is forced out of the line by police as they move people back along the avenue as the road is closed around the Glenugie CSG site. Photo Adam Hourigan / The Daily Examiner Adam Hourigan

UPDATE 5.50pm

Police statement:

Police have arrested 18 people during an operation south of Grafton.
They were arrested today (Monday 7 January 2013) as part of a police operation monitoring protest action outside a gas company, which is conducting works at Glenugie, south of Grafton.
Coffs/Clarence Local Area Commander, Superintendent Mark Holahan, urged all protesters to act within the confines of the law or face being arrested.
"Everyone has the right to protest peacefully, however, when this obstructs traffic, interferes with people's safety and hinders their work, action must be taken," Superintendent Holahan said.
"Police will allege some members of the group are took action that placed their own safety at risk, as well as the safety of police officers and the gas company employees," Superintendent Holahan said.
 

Details of the charges include:


- Eight men aged 58, 42, 63, 23, 67, 50, and two who are 39 were charged with resist or hinder police officer in the execution of duty and pedestrian obstruct driver's/other pedestrian's path. They were all granted conditional bail and will appear before Grafton Local Court on 11 February 2013.
- A 55-year-old man, a 48-year-old man, and a 52-year-old woman were charged with resist or hinder police officer in the execution of duty. They were granted conditional bail and will appear before Grafton Local Court on 11 February 2013.
- A 52-year-old man was charged with was charged with destroy or damage property. He was granted conditional bail and will appear before Grafton Local Court on 11 February 2013.
- A 16-year-old boy was issued a warning under the Young Offender's Act for resist or hinder police officer in the execution of duty.
- A 60-year-old man was charged with refuse/fail to comply with direction. He was granted conditional bail and will appear before Grafton Local Court on 11 February 2013.
- A 39-year-old man was charged with pedestrian obstruct driver's/other pedestrian's path. He was granted conditional bail and will appear before Grafton Local Court on 11 February 2013.
- A 47-year-old man, 44-year-old man and a 60-year-old woman were charged with resist or hinder police officer in the execution of duty. They refused to sign the conditions of their bail and as such will appear before Grafton Local Court tomorrow (Tuesday 8 January 2013).

 

UPDATE 1pm

This just in from police:

Police have arrested 12 people during an operation south of Grafton.

They were arrested today (Monday, January 7) as part of a police operation monitoring protest action outside a gas company, which is conducting works at Glenugie, south of Grafton.

Coffs/Clarence Local Area Commander, Superintendent Mark Holahan, urged all protesters to act within the confines of the law or face being arrested.

"Officers are working with protesters to ensure the company can lawfully access their site," Supt Holahan said.

"Police are concerned that some members of the group are taking action that places their own safety at risk, as well as the safety of police officers and the gas company employees.

"Everyone has the right to protest peacefully, however, when this obstructs traffic, interferes with people's safety and hinders their work, action must be taken.

"All reasonable directions given by police must be adhered to.

"Criminal offences, anti-social behaviour or property damage will not be tolerated.

"I'd remind protesters that this includes the use of recording devices without the subject's knowledge.

"Raising your concerns about a public issue in a peaceful and safe way is one thing, but it another to intimidate or obstruct others," Supt Holahan said. 

UPDATE 11.35 am

DAILY Examiner photographer Adam Hourigan said police are closing the avenue all the way down to 8 Mile Lane and protesters will be pushed back.

UPDATE 11.30 am

Lynette Eggins, anti CSG protester provided this update. Note, this has not been checked with police.

"Seven protestors have now been arrested at the Glenugie protest site.

The police are in the process of jack hammering a protester free from a lock on device. Another remains locked on to a convoy vehicle.

The drill rig and a number of other large trucks carrying equipment and Metgasco work vehicles have been unable to enter the site."

UPDATE 10.45am

Anti CSG protester Lynette Eggins just issued this statement:

"Six Arrests at Glenugie Protest

Six protestors have been arrested at the Glenugie protest site today.

The most recent arrest occurred when a protestor attempted to give water to a another protestor who was locked on. The police have had to grind off lock on devices to release two protestors. Another remains locked on to a convoy vehicle.

The drill rig and a number of other large trucks carrying equipment and Metgasco work vehicles are still waiting to enter the site."

Please note this has not been confirmed by police. The Daily Examiner will check this information with authorities as soon as possible.

UPDATE 10.40am

Our reporter Ross Kendall is on scene and said crowd numbers are building significantly.

He said there appear to be two trucks on either side of the site.

The tactical response squad is also there.

UPDATE 10am

Twitter is alive with comments. The latest is from Drew Hutton who said five people have been arrested at the site

"Go for it you wonderful people," he tweeted.

"Man I wish I was there."

This update came in from Lynette Eggins:

Action Intensifies at Glenugie

ONE protestor has now locked on to a convoy truck. The 150 strong group of protestors gathered at the site continue to sing protest songs. Farmers have arrived on horseback. In addition, one person is suspended in a tripod at the entrance to the site, two are attached to devices in the ground barring access to the site, one is on a tree platform and one is hanging from a suspended aerial wire.

40+ police are present including the tactical response unit and rescue squad and have established a mobile command centre across the road from the drill site.

One protestor has been arrested and taken to the mobile command centre.

The drill rig and a number of other large trucks carrying equipment and Metgasco work vehicles are waiting to enter the site.

If it takes this many police to facilitate one day's work for Metgasco in the Northern Rivers, how many will it take for the other 364 days of the year?

8:30AM

THIS morning started with a "red alert" and a call for those opposed to CSG to head to the Glenugie blockade.

According to reports at 5.49am, Metgasco and AJ Lucas vehicles had left Casino and were on the Coraki Woodburn Rd on their way to the test drilling site.

Police have arrived at the site ahead of the drill rig and associated vehicles.

"Protesters are singing happily while one protestor has opted for a high seat in a tripod," one report said.

"The community are standing up to the invasion from the mining company."

At last report, 20 police officers were at the site.

More updates as they become available.

Topics:  blockade, coal seam gas, glenugie




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