Friday, August 15, 2008

Fathers 4 Justice UK Protest

Fathers 4 Justice motorway protest causes 10 mile tailbacks into Heathrow

The Telegraph

A Fathers 4 Justice campaigner brought rush-hour traffic to a standstill by climbing a motorway gantry dressed as batman.

A Fathers 4 Justice protester has forced the closure of one of Britain's busiest roads, by climbing onto an M25 gantry dressed as Batman. ;

Geoffrey Hibbert, 48, began his protest at 7am between junctions 14 and 15 of the M25, claiming he had not seen his daughter since last summer.The computer engineer unfurled a Fathers 4 Justice banner and displayed pictures of his eight-year-old daughter from the sign over the anti-clockwise carriageway, forcing police to close the motorway.The blockage brought rush hour traffic to a standstill, causings 10 mile tailbacks and delaying people travelling to Heathrow Airport.

Ron Reed, a friend of Mr Hibert, said: "I've just spoken to him, he's okay and he's doing it for his daughter.
"He's been driven to desperation, he's been through all the courts to get access to his daughter and it's cost him £27,000. "He last saw her in August last year and he's only spoken to her once.
"The courts are so geared to the mother, the father gets no justice and that means the kids don't get justice."

A Metropolitan Police spokesman said: "We were alerted at 7am to a man on the gantry of the M25 near junction 14 at Hillingdon."The clockwise carriageway is open as normal but the anti-clockwise carriageway is open with lane closures."We don't negotiate with people in these circumstance but will endeavour to speak to the man and encourage him to come down safely given the position he is in."

Mr Hibbett was arrested after climbing down from a gantry over the M25.
A spokesman for the Metropolitan Police said that the protest ended around 4pm when the man voluntarily came down.Mr Hibbett was arrested on suspicion of causing danger to road users and putting articles on or over the road.“The man came down of his own accord,” he said. “He was arrested by officers at the scene on suspicion of causing danger to road users and putting articles on or over the road.

“He has been taken to a West London Police Station where he is being questioned by police.
“We do not know at this stage whether he came down because he was bored or cold.”
A spokesman for the Highways Agency confirmed that all lanes of the M25 had now been reopened but that lengthy delays remained.

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