US puts Greenpeace on trial for log stunt

The US government is prosecuting the US branch of Greenpeace for its part in an international campaign to protect Brazil's Amazon rainforest that had previously been lauded by the European Union.

Two supporters from Greenpeace Inc, the NGO's US branch, boarded a ship which was carrying wood illegally logged from the Amazon in April 2002 to hang a banner.

Rather than prosecuting the loggers, the US government is taking Greenpeace to court for boarding the ship without authorisation. The case, to be heard in December, is the first time that an entire organisation has been prosecuted for such a protest, and the NGO is concerned that the government is trying to pursue the case without a trial jury. Greenpeace could face a fine of $10,000 (£6,000) and increased government scrutiny.

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