Lucy Lawless Pleads Guilty to Trespassing on Oil Drilling Ship

Lucy Lawless Pleads Guilty to Trespassing on Oil Drilling Ship
Tracy E. Gilchrist

Actress and eco-warrior Lucy Lawless plead guilty on Thursday to trespassing on an oil-drilling ship as part of an action with other Greenpeace activists last February, according to CBS News. The former Xena: Warrior Princess star was arrested after four days of occupying an Arctic-bound Shell drillship.

Lawless, 44, is slated for sentencing in September and faces up to three years in jail. Prosecutors dropped the former, more serious, charge of burglary, according to CBS News.

At the time of her arrest the Spartacus star said, “This chapter has ended, but the story of the battle to save the Arctic has just begun. Seven of us climbed up that drillship to stop Arctic drilling, but 133,000 of us came down.”

Lawless went on to say, “We will continue to stand in solidarity with the communities and species that depend on the Arctic for their lives until Shell cancels its plans to drill in this magical world, and makes the switch to clean, sustainable energy.”

The activists had spent 77 hours on top of a 170 ft. drilling tower before they were arrested and charged with burglary despite a lesser charge of “unlawfully being on a ship” being an option for prosecutors.

The 43-year-old Spartacus and Xena: Warrior Princess star boarded a Shell contracted oil drillship on Feb. 24, in order to prevent it from leaving Auckland, New Zealand for U.S. waters off the shore of Alaska, according to a release from Greenpeace.

Lawless and other environmental activists boarded the Noble Discoverer, which was en route to the Chukchi Sea off the coast of Alaska to drill three exploratory wells over the course of the summer.  Activists asserted that Shell’s exploratory drilling program threatens to devastate the fragile Arctic environment.

More than 135,000 supporters emailed Shell imploring the company to halt its plans for drilling in the Arctic. Shell is the first international oil company to make Arctic drilling a major focus, according to Greenpeace.

“We did what we came to do," Lawless said prior to her arrest. "Together we sent a clear message to Shell that has echoed across the globe — it's time to draw a line in the ice and say: enough.”

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