Charges Dropped Against Sabal Trail Protesters

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The State Attorney’s Office has dropped charges against some of the protesters arrested at a Sabal Trail construction site in Gilchrist County last November.

Eleven of the 14 cases were dismissed due to a lack of evidence.

One case is still pending and two other protesters had already pled “no contest,” which led to fines and probation.

Last fall, there were many protests against the $3.2 billion, 515-mile-long Sabal Trail project across North Central Florida. The pipeline, which has already started operating, carries natural gas, largely to serve utilities companies that recently built new power plants. The pipeline transports the natural gas through Alabama, Georgia and Florida.

Residents of North Central Florida held protests in Alachua, Levy and Gilchrist Counties. Much of the concern over the pipelines came from concern for the damage that pipeline leaks can cause to the water supply in the area.

The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission approved the project saying environment dangers were properly minimized.

The protest in Gilchrist County that resulted in November’s arrests occurred at the site of the construction under the Santa Fe River.

The Associated Press contributed to this report. 

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