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'Columbine' pair clear

Two teenagers were cleared on Wednesday of plotting a Columbine-style massacre at their school. Matthew Swift, 18, and Ross McKnight, 16, were facing life sentences for the alleged killing-spree plan at Audenshaw High School, Greater Manchester. But after deliberating for just 45 minutes the jury at Manchester Crown Court rejected prosecution claims the teenagers had become obsessed with Columbine killers Eric Harris and Dylan Klebold, who murdered 12 students and a teacher and then killed themselves in Colorado in 1999. The defence said their journals were merely the scribblings of two youngsters with over-active imaginations.

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