A student who caused a bomb scare because he wanted a day off work has been spared prison.

Apple Store worker Arjunbir Singh Soin, 21, was given a 40-month jail term suspended for two years at Lewes Crown Court today.

He made five separate calls to Churchill Square shopping centre on December 30 last year in the hope the site would be evacuated - and he would get an extra day in bed.

He got through to staff at River Island and Costa Coffee, telling them there were five bombs on the premises.

The engineering student, who was behind on his university work at the time, peppered the centre with calls from his mobile phone before security staff traced his number.

Police arrested him at work on the same day.

Handing down 200 hours of community work and five rehabilitation days, Judge Christine Laing QC said: "You really need to learn to think more carefully.

"These are really serious offences.

"We live in very troubled times. If that centre had been evacuated, the risk of panic spreading and people being hurt just magnifies.

"That you did this to get a day off work is deeply unimpressive."