A Swiss court ruled in favor of the climate activists who protested at the office of Credit Suisse against their investments in fossil fuels in a peaceful protest in November 2018 on Monday, according to the DW website. The controversy has also affected tennis star Roger Federer, who is the brand ambassador for the bank, with many activists asking him to cut ties with the bank due to their investments in fossil fuels.
The court in the Lausanne suburb of Renens cleared the activists for their stunt in which they wore tennis outfits and hit balls at a Credit Suisse branch in the city. The activists refused to pay fines linked to the charges which resulted in the case going to trial.
In his ruling, Judge Philippe Colelough said due to the imminent danger of the climate crisis the students were not guilty of refusing to pay fines linked to charges like protesting without a permit and resisting police.
In a statement, the bank has said that it “takes note of the verdict and will analyze it" and also said that "in the context of its global climate strategy that it will no longer invest in new coal-fired power plants”.
Laila Batou, the defense lawyer, said they would like the Swiss champion Federer to distance himself from the bank. “If we get him to distance himself from the bank, we will empower our action." 38 year old Federer was forced to issue a press statement on the issue in which he said he took the issue seriously and said: "I appreciate reminders of my responsibility as a private individual, as an athlete and as an entrepreneur, and I'm committed to using this privileged position to dialogue on important issues with my sponsors."