'Irvine 11': Shock, anger greet verdict
Some people began weeping, while 10 to 15 people stormed out in anger after all 10 students were found guilty of conspiring to disrupt and then disrupting a speech at UC Irvine last year by Israeli Ambassador Michael Oren.
Judge Peter J. Wilson had cautioned the 150 people who packed the courtroom, "Please remain in control of your emotions at all times."
Shakeel Syed, executive director of the Islamic Shura Council, said, "Two words: absolutely unbelievable."
He said the verdict will have far-reaching ramifications.
"I believe the heart of America has died today," Syed said.
He added that he was "absolutely shocked" at the verdict and called it a "direct blow" to Muslims in Orange County.
"This is clearly an indication that Muslims are permanent foreigners, at least in Orange County," he said.
The six male and six female jurors deliberated for more than two days and on Thursday had requested the court clerk to read back transcripts of the testimony.
-- Nicole Santa Cruz and Lauren Williams in Santa Ana
Photo: Supporters from many faiths and cultures gather with community leaders Monday to show their disapproval of the expense and long drawn out trial of the "Irvine 11" during a gathering outside the Central Justice Center. Credit: Gina Ferazzi / Los Angeles Times