This paper offers the results of an ethnographic research consisting of a period of one and a half year of observation of the criminal proceedings against the activists of the ‘No Tav Movement’, as well as the analysis of the documents of the trials. The interpretation suggested here aims at highlighting these proceedings as contemporary phenomena of political trials in which both the principle of social defence - foundation and justification of the right to punish - and the principle of raison d’état are at stake. In conclusion, the contribution shows how these principles, which are already irreconcilable with the Magna Charta of the accused person, take on a new form when the State turns global. The public economic order is defended, while those who dispute the merit and the method of infrastructure by critically raising a debate on social and environmental issue prove to be a suitable enemy targeted by criminal sanctions.
Keywords: Political trial - Social defence - State defence - Social movements