Vegan Campaigner Jailed

30/11/09

Monica Lilley (59) has been jailed for 12 weeks for breaching a restraining order which prevented her from contacting her local school with information about animal cruelty and veganism/raw foods.

Monica's prison address is:

Monica Lilley (AV3947)
HMP Bronzefield
Woodthorpe Road
Ashford
Middlesex
TW15 3JZ

Below is a mainstream media article about Monica:

http://www.getsurrey.co.uk/news/s/2061694_raw_vegan_campaigner_sent_to_jail

A raw vegan campaigner will spend Christmas in prison after breaching a restraining order that prevents her from communicating with a Guildford school.

Monica Lilley, a 59-year-old from the town, represented herself when she appeared at Woking Magistrates’ Court on Friday, having been arrested the day before when police were called to Holy Trinity School in Addison Road, Guildford, at 2pm.
Lilley was handed a restraining order by Guildford magistrates in January 2004, which restricted her from contacting Fiona Boulton, head teacher at Guildford High School, going within 100m of the London Road school, and from displaying any photographs, placards or leaflets outside. Back in court - 'From the newsdesk' blog Darren Matravers, prosecuting, said Lilley had sent 14 letters to Mrs Boulton between June 29 and November 26 this year.

He said the campaigner was convicted of eight breaches of her order in December last year and was handed a 16-week sentence, suspended for 18 months, with a 28-day curfew. The latest offences meant that Lilley had breached her suspended sentence, as well as breaking the rules of the restraining order. Mr Matravers said: "She has gone to the school and been caught on CCTV on one occasion. "The letters were hand-delivered and posted to the school containing photocopies of leaflets and articles. The letters talk about animal cruelty and raw foods and express concerns about being ignored and not being able to make protests."

Mr Matravers said the content of the letters caused Mrs Boulton distress and it was time-consuming for her to read them and then report the incidents to the police.
Lilley had approached the school about 10 years ago, expressing an interest in conducting talks about being vegan, Mr Matravers said.

"Messenger"
The mother of two told the court: "I delivered letters around all the schools, not just Guildford High School. "But I am innocent, that is what I am saying.
"If I were to be sent to prison, I fear I would not survive. Two months ago I was in hospital fighting for my life and my weight dropped to five-and-a-half stone.
"The main reason is because I have been eating cooked food for the majority of my life and it does damage. It is a recurring problem. Food goes straight through me.
"It is my moral duty to save the planet for our children.
"I am claiming my free speech in saying, exonerate me because I am not the guilty party. I am too trusting and I get crushed. When I was convicted in 2004, I was portrayed as a terrorist. Mrs Boulton said I had a fixation on her, which is absolute nonsense.
"I am appealing to everybody. We have got one planet, it is a beautiful planet. I frequently put in my letters things like 'love conquers all' and 'let us pull together because we are in it together'.
"It is a sham. I have been crushed by the machinery.
"I am a personable person as everybody knows."
Lilley, who lives with her husband and has children aged 23 and 21, suffered from malabsorption of food, probation officer Jenny Hathaway said.
“Her main concern is that prison would not provide her with the type of food she needs with that condition,” she said.
Lilley, of Poyle Road, added that she would not be the only person affected if she was sent to jail.
“My husband does have high blood pressure,” she said. “He does rely on me quite extensively for quite a lot of things and it would worry me deeply and I think it would worry him deeply.”
Chairman of the bench, Malcolm Stewart, sentenced Lilley to 12 weeks for breaching the suspended sentence and eight weeks, to run concurrently, for the breach of the court order.
“You spoke this morning about your right to freedom of speech, but with freedom of speech comes an element of respect,” the magistrate told her, adding that this should include respecting court orders.
A pale and drawn looking Lilley had final words for the court as she was led away.
“I am just the messenger, trampled over again,” she said. “Just the messenger.”

 

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