Lucy Lawless Arrested in New Zealand After Protesting Aboard Shell Oil-Drilling Ship for Nearly 80 Hours

 @julia_greenberg
on February 27 2012 12:41 PM
Lucy Lawless
Actress Lucy Lawless was one of seven arrested Monday in New Zealand for climbing the tower of a Shell-owned oil-drilling ship in an effort to prevent it from leaving port. The 43-year-old New Zealand native and the other Greenpeace activists climbed the tower early Friday in an effort to prevent the ship from departing. The Noble Discoverer was due to leave the port this weekend to explore oil wells in the Arctic for future drilling. REUTERS/Fred Prouser

Actress Lucy Lawless was one of seven arrested Monday in New Zealand for climbing the tower of a Shell-owned oil-drilling ship in an effort to prevent it from leaving port.

The Associated Press reports the group was removed by police from their perch after nearly 80 hours on a 174-foot drilling tower on the Noble Discoverer in Port Taranaki. Police have charged the seven activists with burglary.

The 43-year-old New Zealand native and the other Greenpeace activists climbed the tower early Friday in an effort to prevent the ship from departing. The Noble Discoverer was due to leave the port this weekend to explore oil wells in the Arctic for future drilling.

Lawless told the AP that she feels compelled to take a stand against oil-drilling in the Arctic because it will hurt the planet and promote global warming.

I've got three kids. My sole biological reason for being on this planet is to ensure that they can flourish, and they can't do that in a filthy, degraded environment, she told the AP. We need to stand up while we still can.

Lawless said in a statement before her arrest that she believes the effort was a success. While only seven activists climbed the tower, Shell received 1333,000 protest emails from people inspired by the activists' effort.

Despite Greenpeace's effort, Shell spokeswoman Shona Geary told the AP that the ship is still set to depart for the Arctic in the next few days.

Lawless is best known for her roles in the TV series Xena: Warrior Princess and Spartacus: Vengeance. The actress has been released from custody and will appear in the New Plymouth District Court Thursday.

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