Tar Sands Protestors To Be In Court, Thursday

VScreen-Shot-2014-07-21-at-3_42_38-PM_jpg-600x330ERNAL — Uintah County prosecutors have filed felony and misdemeanor charges against 21 people from 10 states who were arrested during a summer protest at the site of a controversial tar sands mine in the BookCliffs. Charges range from misdemeanors to felonies, including interfering with officers, failure to stop at an officer’s command, criminal trespass and rioting. The charges stem from a July 21 protest at the U.S. Oil Sands mine site, which sits on land leased to the Canadian energy firm by the state School and Institutional Trust Lands Administration. During the protest, 12 environmental activists climbed an 8-foot-tall, chain-link fence topped with barbed wire and entered the mine site, according to court records. Five of the activists chained themselves to heavy equipment inside the fenced area, according to arresting officers. In July, Utah Tar Sands Resistance spokeswoman Jessica Lee said deputies treated the protesters so roughly during the arrests that it amounted to police brutality. Those charged will make court appearances on Thursday.

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