Drew Hutton arrested at Coal Seam Gas Pipeline Blockade

Published: March 29, 2011

Drew Hutton, spokesperson for Friends of the Earth and leading campaigner for the national Lock the Gate campaign, was arrested this afternoon. 

In a heavy-handed police action, forty police moved on to private property to shut down the blockade camp on a landholder's property. 

The landholder was unhappy with his treatment by the gas company and had invited the blockaders onto his land. 

Drew Hutton has refused police bail conditions that he not return to the property or nearby public roads. 

The arresting officer informed him that he could be held in custody for a month. 

He has been arrested under Section 804 of the Petroleum and Gas Act which guarantees mining and gas companies access to private land and provides for $50 000 fines for hindering the companies' access. 

"What we are clearly seeing here is the way that the gas companies – in this case a multinational company British Gas which owns QGC –  are instructing the local police force. 

"There were reports a fortnight ago of leaked memos from the company to the Queensland Government instructing the government of their legal powers,' Libby Connors, spokesperson for the Queensland Greens pointed out this afternoon.

"The state Labor government has meekly obliged their economic masters – sending in the police to override Queensland landholder rights."


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