CSA drives man to motorway protest
August 26, 2010
A man caused a motorway to be closed for hours as part of a protest against the Child Support Agency.
During an appearance at Preston Magistrates Court, Dr Surendra Sachdeva, chairman of the bench, heard how Marcus King had wanted to voice his anger and frustration about the way he felt he had been treated at the hands of the CSA.
King, 38, occupied a footbridge situated near junction 31a and 32 of the M6 near Preston, armed with several disposable barbecues; and had the intention of sending ‘smoke signals’.
Traffic on the motorway, and other roads around the city, was brought to a complete halt, and tailbacks reached all the way to the Lancashire’s border with Cumbria. King was charged with being a public nuisance.
Adrian Hollamby, prosecuting, stated:
“The defendant had found the bridge on the internet where he could set off these disposable barbecues which were symbolic in that he was setting off smoke signals for help.”
“He wanted to create a peaceful protest in the hope that the police would be called.”
“He said he lost the plot after there was no response from the barbecues which drove him to climb over the barrier, but he had no intention of jumping off and did not want to harm himself or anyone else.”
Mr King’s defence, Darren Smith, explained that his client apologised in full for the incident, and asked for a thorough psychological assessment. Mr King himself said that he was “not a threat to the community”.
He has been kept in custody until his next appearance before Preston Magistrates Court.