Trident Protester Angie Zelter’s Appeal of Bail Conditions Denied

On Tuesday July 25h July Sheriff Norman McFadyen denied an appeal of special bail conditions by nuclear disarmament campaigner Angie Zelter at the Appeal Court in Edinburgh and sent her back to prison. 

According to Trident Ploughshares member Jane Tallents  “Sheriff Macfayden barely listened to arguments put forward by Counsel acting on Zelter’s behalf and seemed to see Angie’s many years of principled nonviolent campaigning as a reason to keep her in prison.”

Writing in Bella Caledonia yesterday Trident Ploughshares campaigner and Vice Chair of Scottish CND Janet Fenton said: “These bail conditions are not in the public interest, given the costs attached to locking the two up. Nor is it usual that such conditions should apply to individuals that present absolutely no risk of violent behaviour, The Scottish legal system is allowing itself to be politically biased in upholding the interests of the UK Government and the MOD in the prevention of citizens to protest and to demonstrate. It questions Scottish legal impartiality that they are doing so in a matter where the Scottish Government, in line with the majority of world governments, shares the views of the protesters.”

Supporters vigil outside Dumbarton Court

Angie, and Brian Quail, both members of the nuclear disarmament campaigning group Trident Ploughshares, were sent to prison by a Justice of the Peace in Dumbarton JP Court on 13 July when they refused to agree to special bail conditions which prohibit them from going within 100 metres of Coulport or the Faslane nuclear weapons base.

Angie originally argued that she had no intention of lying in the roadway again but had every right to protest at the bases as many protesters have done on a weekly basis since 2006. She told the JP court that she had had no conviction in the last ten years and that she had reported the UK government to the police for the crime of deploying a weapon of mass destruction, as well as the Prime Minister for her Commons admission that she would give the order the fire a weapon of mass murder.

Angie and Brian will appear in Dumbarton JP Court tomorrow, Wednesday 26th July, for an Intermediate hearing, and Zelter will have a further opportunity to submit a second appeal in the coming week.

The case has attracted considerable media attention in Scotland. And the renowned comic book writer Mark Millar, creator of Civil War and other Marvel comics, has paid Zelter’s legal fees. An online petition has gained over 3,500 signatures. Westminster SNP group voiced its support for Zelter and Quail and SNP MSP Fulton MacGregor, a member of Scotland’s Justice Committee, has contacted the Lord Advocate of Scotland to call for a review of the case. [6]


Brian Quail has not so far appealed and will remain in custody at least until the intermediate hearing scheduled for Dumbarton Justice of the Peace Court on Wednesday 26 July.

Angie Zelter said:

“Right since Trident Ploughshares was launched in 1998 members of Trident Ploughshares have stood up in Court and argued that Trident is illegal because it is an inherently indiscriminate weapon, the use of which would inevitably cause the deaths of hundreds of thousands if not millions of civilians.  At times the courts have listened to those arguments.  At other times they have not.

But the United Nations has now adopted a Treaty that will ban nuclear weapons  for the very reasons so many of us have for so long taken action, and gone to prison – because of  the unacceptable humanitarian consequences of any use of nuclear weapons.  The new global norm of not possessing, deploying or using nuclear weapons exposes the fact that the nine nuclear weapons States – including the UK – are out of step with the rest of the world. 

So at this time it is even more important that we stand at the gates of the places where those weapons are held and demand that the government listen to the majority world and start the process of disarmament.”

Zelter and Quail were arrested along with Sam Donaldson, 29, a Community Worker from Hull, Almudena Izquierdo Olmo, 60, from Madrid,  a worker at the Politecnical University, and Juan Carlos Navarro Diaz, 46, a University librarian from the Canary Islands.