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Occupy London liberates abandoned East End magistrate’s court to put the one per cent on trial


As the Occupy London Stock Exchange (OccupyLSX) occupation prepares to present its case at the High Court today, members of Occupy London alongside a group of military veterans – Occupy Veterans – have liberated a disused court house in London’s East End. The opening of Occupy London’s fourth occupation, will see the movement conducting “trials of the one per cent” in an abandoned magistrate’s court building which has lain empty since 1996, despite its prime location and grade II listing. [1]

The occupation of the Old Street Magistrate’s Court (335-337 Old Street, London Borough of Hackney), now renamed Occupy Justice, took place early on Tuesday morning. It was opened by Occupy London supporters and Occupy Veterans coming together led by the Occupy London’s ‘Tank of Ideas’, the movement’s armoured peace vehicle.

The new residents, who include members of Occupy Veterans – a group of former and active-duty servicemen and women drawn from the 99 per cent – have pledged to maintain a residence at the courthouse, to take good care of the building and to provide daytime use of the facilities for Occupy London to put the one per cent on trial. The residents have already spoken with the various stakeholders of the building and are looking to develop an open dialogue.

This fourth occupation joins the existing OccupyLSX camp by St Paul’s Cathedral, the Finsbury Square occupation and the Bank of Ideas, the abandoned multi million pound office complex of UBS on Sun Street, which Occupy London liberated in an act of ‘public reposession’ – now a thriving arts and community centre.

The one per cent on trial at Occupy Justice

Working with solicitors to construct cases based on English law, Occupy Justice will provide a much needed space to bring a sense of accountability to those whose actions have been in contravention of the public interest. These will not be show trials, but public airings of wrongdoing perpetuated by those in positions of authority. Occupy London will work hard to present solid legal arguments for scrutiny in the court of public opinion.

Initial cases will be announced shortly against those who have tanked the global economy, slashed Britain’s social services, stripped people of their civil rights and repeatedly lied the nation into war. It is expected that most cases will be heard in absentia.

Adam Fitzmaurice, Occupy London supporter and new resident of Occupy Justice said that the intention is to put the building back into public service, to satisfy a need for justice that the relevant authorites have so far been unable to meet: “The government has been unable – or more likely, unwilling – to bring those responsible for the worst economic disaster since the 1930s to justice, so the people have to assume those roles.”

“The way UBS owned Sun Street Properties has behaved towards the Bank of Ideas, with blatant disregard for fair procedure, shows how many of the most powerful financial institutions behave as if they were above the law. Occupy Justice are going to redress that balance. Unlike UBS, we’ll afford our defendants due process, but we do intend to hold people to account.”

Joe Glenton, a member of Occupy Veterans and former Lance Corporal who served with the Royal Logistics corps in Afghanistan explained: “Many people join the military to see justice spread throughout the world, but the reality doesn’t always match up to the promise. In theUK, the courts are meant to serve the people, but here too it feels like the courts are never allowed to hear charges against the one per cent. That’s why Occupy Veterans has come together to march in solidarity with Occupy London, and the wider global Occupy movement, in the aim of achieving justice, as well as a more just society, for all.”


[1] http://www.mpa.gov.uk/committees/mpa/2005/050224/10/


10 Responses to “Occupy London liberates abandoned East End magistrate’s court to put the one per cent on trial”

  1. I believe in that. The power they have and the rules they narcissistically enforce can quite easily be turned against them and their stature!

    Im coming in to the city tonite, all going well and will be staying near the cathedral. I have some copies of my book and wish to introduce my ideas at the general assembly this week. Can you find me a vacant spot?

  2. Occupy Veterans is new to me. I should guess they have so much to contribute. They will certainly be worldly wise. It is so gratifying to have them aboard!

  3. You have now descended into pure criminality, I’d like to see what would happen if a group of people decided to squat one of your houses or places of work! I bet you’d resort to the real courts then. I hope they evict you and soon and by force!

  4. Oh how interesting, this “abandoned” building actually had a planning application submitted in July 2010!

    I think you may have explaining to do!


  5. It is always good to read about developments at Occupy, but I think this is a step in the wrong direction. Out of sight IS out of mind. As such, I was dismayed to read of the planned downsizing of the St Pauls camp yesterday in the Evening Standard – the initial impression was that the City had won the day by sidelining Occupy into the less visible venues of Finsbury Square and the Bank of Ideas.

    Having read one of the Occupy blogger’s detailed and informative post into the reasons behind the decision, I do now understand why this movement may be following this course of action.

    I think that I am representative of those members of the public who want to help reform the system for the greater good, but also feel the need to protect their livelihoods so they can provide for their families. My particular interest is in stopping banks and other large corporations from using their posititions to maximize shareholder returns at the cost of blocking much needed innovators and entrepreneurs from getting our ideas to market. We have the solutions to creating jobs, economic growth and much needed technological change to protect the environment, but this is being forsaken for short term profit by those with vested interests.

    From this perspective, I wanted to throw the following ideas into the hat with a view to enabling Occupy to build on the traction that they have already created:

    In order to engage the majority of employed, but poorly paid individuals who’s jobs and pensions are disappearing before them, Occupy needs to redress the risk-benefit balance:

    (1) BUILDING ON IDEAS – the ideas put forward at the general assemblies and in other meetings need to be put onto a tree structure online wiki. This would reduce the circular discussions that you mention in your post and allow people to put forward complimentary ideas, arguments for and against their implementation. The same wiki could also be used to allow individuals and organizations to offer time, resources and funding. It occurred to me traveling on the underground that if Occupy had a Bluetooth enabled smartphone app that provided a daily update on hot topics, likeminded commuters could contribute to the discussion and interact with each other – their discussions/contributions could then continue using web access when they emerged from the underground. By enabling transparency, decision making by referendum and allowing individuals to claim credit for their ideas (if they wish to do so), this would also resolve the emerging hierarchy issues highlighted by many disillusioned Occupy participants.

    (2) CONSTRUCTIVE DISCUSSION => TANGIBLE SOLUTION: To reduce the risks of participation, we collectively need to start showcase projects to demonstrate how individuals can use their spare time and resource – whilst still holding down their day job – to move from being a passive consumer into being more self sufficient and independently productive.

    These and other sustainability focused ideas are scheduled to be published over the coming weeks, so any feedback on the above would be much appreciated.

  6. My granddaughter, Sunaina, died on the 6th day in the care of Redbridge social services, and on the 26th day of a hospital admission for drug overdoses by her GP. Her internal organs unlawfully removed, the local authority hid her body for six years and brought legal action to force a funeral without toxicology tests. We were forced to expatriate the body to India where it remains in a freezer in a mortuary to this day. A gagging order was put on the family in London and bailiffs called in on the family home by the NHS Trust to recover court costs.

    Extensive research was carried out by my daughter, Miss Neelu Chaudhari, a pharmacist, of the medical files that proved Sunaina’s death was entirely preventable.

    When Neelu brought the evidence before the three professional bodies for doctors, nurses and pharmacists, she was struck off by her professional body for whistleblowing. Her appeal C1/2011/2233 Chaudhari V General Pharmaceutical Council is presently filed in the Court of Appeal in the Royal Courts of Justice, Strand.

    Any public support would be appreciated. Please sign the peition on the website above.


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