Occupy London protesters who camped outside St. Paul’s Cathedral for more than four months cost the City of London and its police authority more than 1.06 million pounds ($1.7 million) in legal and monitoring costs, according to their response to a Freedom of Information request.
The protest encampment, the anti-capitalism campaigners’ largest in London, cost the financial district 120,000 pounds in legal fees and 28,000 pounds in health and safety expenses, City of London Police said in an e-mail. The neighborhood’s police authority spent 525,257 pounds to move officers from other duties and 386,434 pounds in expenses such as overtime.
Wealth disparities fueled protests around the globe last year. The Occupy Movement began in September, when protesters took up residence in New York’s Zuccotti Park to highlight the plight of Americans who suffered even as the largest U.S. banks recovered from the 2008 financial crisis.
Demonstrators inspired by the Occupy Wall Street protests in New York moved to St. Paul’s in October, leading to the cathedral’s temporary closure later that month. Police dismantled tents and makeshift shelters when they evicted Occupy London demonstrators from their campsite outside St. Paul’s on Feb. 28.
The last remaining camp in Finsbury Square cost Islington council 10,000 pounds to monitor, according to a response from a separate Freedom of Information request. Bloomberg LP’s European headquarters are located on Finsbury Square.
Evicting protesters from their encampment around City Hall in November cost Los Angeles taxpayers $2.35 million, officials said Dec. 23.