Anti-globalisation activist Bove back in jail

15th November 2005, Comments 0 comments

TOULOUSE, France, Nov 15 (AFP) - French anti-globalisation activist Jose Bové was handed a four-month jail sentence by an appeals court on Tuesday for destroying genetically modified (GM) crops.

TOULOUSE, France, Nov 15 (AFP) - French anti-globalisation activist Jose Bové was handed a four-month jail sentence by an appeals court on Tuesday for destroying genetically modified (GM) crops.

The moustachioed campaigner, who has become a cult figure within the anti-globalisation movement, was accused of helping to uproot a field of GM maize near the southwestern French city of Toulouse in July 2004.

Bové, who was imprisoned for five weeks in 2003 on similar charges, was one of several hundred people who uprooted the field in Menville west of Toulouse.

He stood trial in late September along with eight others, including Green party parliamentary deputy Noël Mamère and euro-deputy Gérard Onesta, who were both handed three-month suspended sentences on Tuesday.

Five other defendants were given two-month suspended sentences. The ninth, an 85-year-old farmer, was allowed to walk free on account of his age.

Lawyers for the defence had requested that all of the 222 people who originally turned themselves in to police face charges over the incident, but an appeal court ruled in April that only the ringleaders should stand trial.

Appearing in court in September, Bové had reporters he was delighted to have the chance to "alert public opinion about the dangers of GM farming."

A leader of the radical Farmers' Confederation trade union, Bové was imprisoned for five weeks in 2003 for uprooting GM crops.

Bové came to international fame in 1999 when he was one of a group who demolished a half-built McDonald's eatery in the southern town of Millau. In 2002 he served a month and a half behind bars for that attack.

Recently he has let it be known he is considering running for the French presidency in 2007.

Copyright AFP

Subject: French news


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