San Francisco Chronicle

More than 200 people were arrested Saturday outside Chevron's Richmond refinery during a protest over safety issues at the plant and the company's global environmental practices.

The arrests came hours into a protest that began with a rally Saturday morning outside the Richmond BART Station and a march west to Chevron's gates. By the time the demonstration reached the refinery, the crowd numbered into the thousands.

Protesters chanted outside the gate and drew a giant sunflower using biodegradable paint on the pavement. Police began making arrests when the demonstrators, many of them carrying sunflowers, walked onto company property and refused to leave.

Eventually, 210 people were arrested, nearly all of them on suspicion of trespassing, police said. They were cited and released.

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