RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) -- The first Moral Monday protesters arrested at the North Carolina General Assembly are set to appear in a Wake County courtroom and are expected to plead not guilty.

Among the 17 scheduled for a hearing Monday is NAACP North Carolina president Rev. William Barber, who was arrested April 29 on misdemeanor counts of 2nd degree trespassing, failure to disperse on command and violating building rules.

More than 450 people have been arrested so far as part of what have become weekly Monday evening protests against the policies championed by Gov. Pat McCrory and the Republican-controlled legislature.

NACCP legal adviser Irv Joyner said all of the defendants plan to plead not guilty and will be represented by lawyers who volunteered to work for free.

Another protest is scheduled Monday night.

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