Three Gloucester men were today cleared of plotting to ambush security officers delivering cash to a Tesco Express store in the city.
Vincent Reese, 34, of Evenlode Road, Tuffley, Damien Jackson, 37, of Beaufort Road, White City, and Davey Margrett, 29, of Windrush Road, Tuffley, had all carried luggage into the dock in preparation for the verdicts going against them.
But the jury, which had been in retirement for just over nine hours, returned to find all three not guilty of conspiracy to commit robbery from G4S Cash Solutions between 9th December 2012 and 1st January this year.
During a trial of two and half weeks the prosecution alleged that the three defendants were planning to ambush a cash delivery to the Tesco Express store in Painswick road, Matson.
Police had kept surveillance on the trio in the weeks leading up to their arrests.
According to the prosecution, defendants were seen making trips to the area of the store in the early hours of Monday mornings - the usual time for cash to be taken to the cashpoint machine.
Surveillance revealed they were also carefully studying the CCTV cameras at the ATM - and checking out access to a flat immediately above it, alleged Robert Duval, prosecuting
They also took a great interest, he said, in the alleyways and paths around the store.
But the defendants told the jury that their only intention was to ambush a man who had sold them a 'dodgy' car.
Balaclavas found in the car when two of them were arrested were for go-karting, they said.
After the jury verdicts had been delivered Judge Jamie Tabor QC said he woud be writing to the chief constable of Gloucestershire to congratulate the force on 'the extremely well prepared case.'
The surveillance work carried out had been 'excellent,' he said.