Olympic canoeist to face trial for Extinction Rebellion protests

An Olympic gold medal-winning canoeist is due to appear in court charged with public order offences for his involvement with the Extinction Rebellion climate protests.

Etienne Stott, 40, was arrested on Waterloo Bridge in April last year with other protesters after they refused to comply with police orders to leave.

Stott won the slalom event with his partner Tim Baillie at the London 2012 Olympic Games and was awarded an MBE for services to canoeing the following year.

He retired from the sport in 2016.

He denied one count of breaching a Section 14 Notice of the Public Order Act 1986 – a law that gives police power to impose restrictions at a static protest, including ordering them to leave the area – at a hearing last summer.

The Met had ordered protesters to move to another protest site at nearby Marble Arch.

A spokeswoman for Extinction Rebellion said: “Etienne has pleaded not guilty to the charge and will argue his actions were justified given the terrifying urgency of the climate and ecological emergency, and the UK Government’s failure to act.”

Stott will face trial at City of London Magistrates Court on Tuesday.