FORT LAUDERDALE, FLA. — The controversial terrorism prosecution of six South Florida men again ended in uncertainty Wednesday after the second jury selected to hear the case became so divided over the evidence that it could not agree on any verdicts.
Weary prosecutors gave no immediate indication whether the government would try the case a third time.
Given the serious nature of the allegations, it could be difficult for the Justice Department, which has made fighting terrorism its top priority, to abandon charges that the men sought to join forces with Al Qaeda in attacks against Chicago's Sears Tower and Miami's FBI headquarters, former prosecutors said.
U.S. District Judge Joan Lenard said she would hold a conference with attorneys to discuss a possible retrial.
"The United States will announce its position on this matter at that time," said Alicia Valle, special counsel to the U.S. Attorney's Office in Miami.
Lenard granted the mistrial on the 13th day of deliberations after the jury of seven men and five women said they were hopelessly deadlocked. An earlier trial in the so-called Liberty City 7 case ended similarly, with jurors acquitting one defendant and reaching no verdicts for the other six.