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Luke Skelton: Jury discharged after failing to reach verdict over teenager’s alleged far-right terror plot

By Lizzie Dearden

The jury in a trial over an alleged far-right terror plot has been discharged after they failed to reach a verdict.

Luke Skelton, 18, could face a retrial on a charge of preparing acts of terrorism.

Teesside Crown Court heard that he carried out hostile reconnaissance on police stations in Newcastle and wrote a manifesto and “final note” to spread his message after an attack.

But Mr Skelton, who is autistic, denied the charge and said he did not want to harm anybody.

The jury was discharged on Friday after seven hours of deliberations. They told a judge that there was no prospect of them reaching a verdict on which 10 of them were agreed.

The Recorder of Middlesbrough, Judge Paul Watson QC, ordered a hearing to take place on Thursday where the prosecution will state their intention on whether to pursue a retrial.

Mr Skelton, of Oxclose in Washington, remains remanded in custody.

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