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Last Updated: Thursday, 6 October 2005, 16:35 GMT 17:35 UK
Big Brother protesters fined 400
Two fathers' rights protesters have been fined 400 each for their part in a failed protest at the Celebrity Big Brother house in January.

Jason Hatch, 33, of Cheltenham, and David Pyke, 49, of Swindon Village, Gloucs, were convicted of disorderly conduct and obstructing the police.

St Albans magistrates heard the pair were caught with four others before they entered the complex at Elstree.

The men were also ordered to pay 418 each in costs and compensation.

'Maximum publicity'

The court heard the men let off fireworks, waking nearby residents and housemates before chaining themselves to railings to avoid arrest.

The pair were caught with Fathers 4 Justice banners still rolled up and their "superhero" costumes in their rucksacks.

District Judge Geoffery Wicks told the men: "This is not the first time you have been involved in a demonstration designed to attract your cause maximum publicity.

"I am not proposing to make martyrs of you because in my view your case does not have sufficient merit to warrant martyrdom."

Speaking outside court, Hatch, of Alstone Mews, Cheletenham - the man who scaled Buckingham Palace earlier this year - said he was disappointed at the outcome.

He and Pyke, who have since quit the group and formed Real Fathers 4 Justice, vowed to continue with the high-profile protests to win a change in the law for fathers.

On 3 October, Andrew James, of Newport, south Wales, Stephen Smith, of Lockleaze, Bristol, and Michael Downes, of Newhall Green, Manchester, were each fined 250 after admitting public order offences.

Roland Primus, of Lower Earley, Reading, Berkshire, pleaded guilty on 30 September to the same offences.

Charges relating to the incident were dropped against Matthaus Huber, 52, from Dagenham, and Elaine Risk, of Manchester.


SEE ALSO:
Big Brother protest group fined
03 Oct 05 |  England
Fathers' rights members in court
01 Mar 05 |  England
Big Brother protesters in court
15 Jan 05 |  Beds/Bucks/Herts
Men arrested for Big Brother raid
14 Jan 05 |  Entertainment


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