The jury in the trial of a furniture shop owner accused of causing the New Ferry explosion has been discharged.
Pascal Blasio, 57, was charged with causing the gas blast at the Homes In Style shop in Wirral, on 25th March 2017, and of a count of fraud relating to an insurance claim made afterwards (2).
After a four-week trial, and after having deliberated for 14 hours, jurors at Liverpool Crown Court were asked on Friday whether they would be able to reach verdicts on which at least 10 of them were agreed, if given more time. The foreman told the court they would not.
Judge Andrew Menary QC said: "In those circumstances, I discharge you now from returning verdicts in this case."
Henry Riding, prosecuting, said the Crown would seek a retrial.