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Last Updated: Thursday, 3 May 2007, 16:17 GMT 17:17 UK
'Time wasting' in bomb plot trial
The five men convicted (clockwise: Omar Khyam, Salahuddin Amin, Waheed Mahmood, Anthony Garcia and Jawad Akbar)
Five men were convicted of the bomb plot at the Old Bailey
A juror in the fertiliser bomb plot trial has suggested that time wasting by his colleagues delayed the verdict.

Michael Symes, 44, told BBC Radio Five Live that jurors faked illness and chose "the easy option" when given the chance to finish early.

The jury took a record 27 days to convict five men of the bomb plot - a thoroughness praised by the judge.

But Mr Symes said: "My personal feeling is that it's not to be proud of to take that long."

Omar Khyam, 25, Waheed Mahmood, 34, Jawad Akbar, 23, Salahuddin Amin, 31, and Anthony Garcia, 24, were all jailed for life on Monday at the end of the year-long trial.

Big responsibility

Mr Symes said he "very much enjoyed" the trial and felt "a bit lost" now it was over.

He said he took his duty in the case very seriously, but claimed some of his fellow jurors did not.

They opted for shorter days and would always put off hearing evidence until the next day when given the opportunity by the judge, he said.

"My personal feeling was, 'Let's do it now'. For the people in the dock it's an extra hour they have to spend in the dock.

I was there to do a job. I wasn't there to make friends
Michael Symes

"I was focusing on the defendants and they were focusing on themselves. That's my view"

He also said the trial was delayed by some jurors falsely claiming to be ill.

"You get the same people regularly being off on a Friday or Monday and you know that they are not all genuine."

Mr Symes said some jurors chose to socialise together outside of court, but he did not join them.

"I was there to do a job. I wasn't there to make friends."

However, he also said he had "very much enjoyed" the trial and felt "a bit lost" now that it was over.

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