Business, Finance & Economics

Xena: Warrior Princess actress arrested for Greenpeace stunt


Lucy Lawless, former Xena: Princess Warrior star is arrested in New Zealand after Greenpeace protest to stop Arctic oil drilling.


Frederick M. Brown

"Xena: Warrior Princess" actress Lucy Lawless was arrested in New Zealand Monday along with six other Greenpeace activists after occupying an oil-drilling ship.

The actress boarded the ship with colleagues Friday in order to prevent it from sailing to the Arctic, where it is contracted by Shell to undertake exploratory drilling in the region.

"This chapter has ended, but the story of the battle to save the Arctic has just begun," Lawless said in a statement that was reported by AFP.

According to the New Zealand Herald, Lawless, a native Kiwi who starred in the television series "Xena: Warrior Princess" from 1995-2001, was named a Greenpeace ambassador in 2009 for her long-time activism.

Lawless told AFP on Friday before the occupation of the oil ship that she was not concerned about her possible arrest over the protest.

"That's the least of my concerns," she said told AFP. "I'm a true believer. We need to start switching over to renewable energy now, we don't have to go to the ends of the earth to suck out every last drop of oil."

One of the activists had left the ship on Saturday and was arrested for unlawfully boarding the ship but charges were later increased to burglary, for which they could face prison time, according to the Associated Press.

Along with other punishments doled out in New Zealand, Lawless' ability to travel to the United States might be threatened if she is convicted says the New Zealand Herald.

Conservation groups such as Greenpeace have been critical of the move by the US State Department last August to allow drilling in the Artic Ocean near Alaska.