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Friday, 24 August, 2001, 16:21 GMT 17:21 UK
GM protesters in court
Gm protester
A protester attempts to dive under a tractor
Six protesters have appeared in court after a demonstration over the planting of genetically modified crops at a Highland farm.

The court appearances followed a demonstration by the Highlands and Islands GM Concern group at Roskill Farm, in Munlochy.

Northern Constabulary said 11 people were arrested on Thursday for breach of the peace offences, six of whom were held in custody.

John Porteus
John Porteus: Making a stand

The five men and a woman were all charged with aggravated trespass when they appeared at Dingwall Sheriff Court.

They were granted bail on condition they do not go within half a mile of Scotland's four GM crop trial sites and will face trial on 23 November.

Highlands and Islands GM Concern said cross-pollination from the oilseed rape could affect neighbouring crops and voiced fears about the effect of a herbicide to be used in the Black Isle trials.

The Black Isle site is one of four in the north of Scotland where the Scottish Executive gave approval this week for the farm trials of GM crops.

About 12 local people maintained their vigil at the farm on Friday, despite the end of GM seed planting.

Protester John Porteus said: "I think anyone who believes in an issue like this and believes that there is an injustice should make a stand, no matter how small.

'Potential danger'

"I greatly support these local organic farmers who stand to lose the most."

Chief Superintendent Ramsay McGhee said peaceful protest was totally acceptable but any attempt to interfere with farm machinery would be met with more arrests.

He said: "The protesters were informed that if anybody interfered with the vehicle itself or anybody on that vehicle, or caused themselves or anybody else potential danger, then we would deal with it accordingly."

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 ON THIS STORY
Craig Anderson reports
"Protesters are incensed at the sowing of GM oilseed rape"
See also:

23 Aug 01 | Scotland
Protesters arrested at GM crop farm
21 Aug 01 | Scotland
Ministers approve GM crop trials
24 Jul 01 | Scotland
New Scots GM trials planned
28 Mar 01 | Scotland
Anger over new GM crop trials
01 Mar 01 | UK
GM trials spark fresh row
23 Jan 01 | Scotland
Politicians back GM crop trials
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