Judges, attorneys and court personnel at the Southern District courthouse at 500 Pearl St. reacted with relief, and also regret, now that it appears the trial of accused Sept. 11 mastermind Khalid Sheikh Mohammed and four co-defendants will not be held in lower Manhattan.

There was also the recognition that, even though the prosecution may not take place near Ground Zero, the intense security planning already under way will pay off because the Southern District will continue to handle its share of terrorism trials.

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