Swiss appeals court reverses acquittal of Credit Suisse climate protesters
(Reuters, 24 Sep 2020) The surprise verdict had inspired other acts of civil disobedience by climate protesters.
A Swiss appeals court on Thursday reversed an earlier ruling that had acquitted 12 climate activists of trespassing at Credit Suisse on the grounds their actions were necessitated by the "imminent danger" of global warming.
The surprise January verdict had inspired other acts of civil disobedience by climate protesters, including against banks financing fossil fuel projects, and was seen as setting an important precedent for follow-up cases.
The case originally went to court after protesters, mostly students, refused to pay a fine for trespassing inside the bank in Nov. 2018. Dressed in tennis whites, they pretended to be tennis superstar Roger Federer to draw attention to his sponsorship deal with the bank which they want him to drop.
Judge Christophe Maillard told the appeals court on Thursday that the danger of climate change was "imminent" but that the defendants could have used other means of protesting.