Socialist Worker

18 months jail for protester

Issue No. 2204

Martin Askew, a protester arrested after demonstrations for Gaza in 2009, was sentenced to 18 months in prison on Friday of last week.

He was found guilty of two counts of violent disorder. Martin had pled not guilty to the charges and fought a political trial.

The defence told how Martin “had direct contact with people in Gaza, and had paternal feeling for the children that were suffering there”.

Israel’s horrific attack on Gaza had a profound effect on Martin, and his defence asked Judge Denniss to recognise that “an immediate custodial sentence will be damaging”.

But the judge gave out another of what he calls “deterrent sentences”.

Martin’s partner, mother and many of his supporters attended the hearing and were devastated by the result.

They vowed to continue the fight for justice for him—and the other Gaza protesters who have been imprisoned.

Write letters of support and solidarity to Martin Askew, A0068AT, HMP Wormwood Scrubs, PO Box 757, Du Cane Road, London W12 OAE

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