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EXCLUSIVE BLOODY CARNAGE; EXCLUSIVE: Secret papers expose Scotland's blade terror.


SECRET legal papers today expose the savage toll of violence inflicted by knives on the streets of Scotland.

Court documents detailing weapon offences for just one month reveal the devastation wreaked by blade-wielding thugs.

They include stabbings, slashings, and robberies carried out by hoodlums carrying blades including swords, knives and axes.

Prosecutor Shona Barrie warned: "Knives kill - as we well know from the appalling homiciderate in Scotland - and we will intervene at the earliest opportunity to protect the public. "We will prosecute knife carriers in court so that the judge has the powers available to impose an appropriate sentence.

" Weapons seized by police include a cutthroat razor, a joiner's hole punch and a set of sharpened dog tags. The majority of offences happened in the street but two were committed in hospitals, one in a pub, another in a nightclub - and one on a packed bus.

The documents handed to the Sunday Mail cover every conviction involving a weapon - except murders - which went through the Sheriff and High Courts in Glasgow in July. SwordBarrie, divisional Procurator Fiscal for Glasgow South, said: "If you take a knife out in public you risk going straight to jail and staying there.

"It's no use saying you had the knife for your protection or that you weren't going to use it. "Knife crime is a Scotlandwide issue. These problems with knife crime are being played out across Scotland. "We're tough on knife crime in policy and practice. "Our position is clear: It doesn't matter who you are, where you live, or whether you have a vegetable knife or a sword."

Those caught include Allan Edie, convicted of the attempted murder of Christopher Boyle after stabbing him in the stomach with a lock knife at Byblos nightclub last December. Also featured on the list is Nicholas McGurk - jailed for six years and five months for two counts of assault and robbery with a kitchen knife within three days of each other. Of the 41 people convicted, all but three had previous convictions and 30 were given a jail sentence. Just five had previous for weapon-related crime, suggesting criminals "graduate" to using knives. And 13 per cent of those From Page One convicted were women - all under 35. Crimes committed range from attempted murder, assault and robbery, to possessing an offensive weapon, with sentences ranging from a pounds 150 fine to six and a half years in prison. The youngest on the list was a 15 year-old caught carrying a samurai sword. He already had previous convictions for theft, breach of the peace and assault and his case was referred to the Children's Panel.

The oldest was 44-year-old James Gallagher, of Royston, Glasgow, jailed for six months for possessing a cutthroat razor in Edgefauld Road on June 8. David Koppel, consultant cranio-facial surgeon at Glasgow's Southern General was horrified by the injuries inflicted. He said: "Any of these implements - such as the dog tags - are potentially fatal. "Some of the injuries inflicted in these kinds of attacks are horrific. Stabbed "They can range from bruising and swelling to life threatening injuries and everything in between. "I have seen neck stabbings where the knife has transsected the spinal cord. "I have dealt with cases where the knife has been stabbed through the eye and driven into the brain."

He added: "I don't think the situation with knife crime is getting any better. "We see a steady stream of these kind of horrific cases. "We see patients who have injuries that leave permanent functional problems. They may be paralysed from the neck down or have other forms of paralysis. "The effects can be devastating and can mean that the patient can never return to work or a normal life. "At the other end of the spectrum, we see patients who have significant injuries and after treatment have facial scarring or deformity. "This can have huge, long lasting psychological effects for some of the patients.

"But it is very worrying how many people we see who view this injury as some sort of occupational hazard. "They seem to considerthe scarring and injuries as part and parcel of their daily lives." The consultant added: "The amount of inter-personal violence and facial trauma we see in Glasgow is far higherthe scarring and injuries as part and parcel of their daily lives." The consultant added: "The amount of inter-personal violence and facial trauma we see in Glasgow is far higher no visible role models in this society, so young men fail educationally, they fail socially and there's no place for them in the family."

John Watt, Area Procurator Fiscal for Argyll and Clyde, which covers remote areas such as the islands Arran and Cumbrae, insisted: "If you carry a knife, you are just a rush of blood away from drawing and using that knife. "When that happens, someone ends up injured or dead. It is no excuse to say you're carrying a knife for your own protection. "It is the public who need to be protected from you and as prosecutors, that is our first priority." The Sunday Mail exposed the horror of knife crime last year after one of our team was stabbed in an unprovoked attack during a drugs investigation.

Dog-tag robber caught on tape

VIOLENT yob John Hamilton terrified a bus full of revellers during a horrific stick-up. He thrust a lethally-sharpened dog tag to the necks of terrified passengers and demanded cash. CCTV cameras captured the scar-faced 30-year-old launching the attack on a bus in the west end of Glasgow in April. Hamilton was later jailed for 16 months and his attack was among the blade crimes detailed in the secret papers passed to the Sunday Mail. They also include axe wielding Stephen Hurst from Ruchazie, who stood in the middle of Craighouse Street, Glasgow, shouting and swearing on March 16 this year at 2am. Police were called to deal with the 22-year-old and when he saw them, he threw the axe into the street before running off.

Hurst - who has previous road traffic and drugs offences - was sentenced to 240 hours community service. In another shocking case, drunken thug Patrick Bonner, 23, from Motherwell, stabbed his own aunt with a hunting knife after a row . Police arrested him and found the knife in the waistband of his trousers. He was sentenced to a year in jail. Our investigation also revealed a worrying rise in the number of women carrying knives. Of the 41 different convictions there were three women under the age of 35. Leighann Regan, 29, was spotted with a knife tucked in to the back of her tracksuit bottoms at Glasgow Royal Infirmary on Boxing Day 2008. Regan, from Maukenfauld Street, Glasgow, said: "My wee brother had been attacked. "He was in a bad way and I went across to see what was happening. I found the knife and picked it up because I didn't want the people who attacked him to come back and use it. I would never use or carry knives."

Headbutted Despite her excuses, Regan - who has a previous conviction under the Dangerous Dogs Act - was sentenced to 100 hours community service. Laura Stewart, 32, from Shawholm Crescent, went into another woman's home in Forge Street, Glasgow, headbutted her and left. The victim's husband saw Stewart with a black handled kitchen knife. She was traced later and made a full admission. She had no previous convictions and was sentenced to 100 hours community service. Mandy McGurk, 30, from Tresta Road, Glasgow, was stopped by police for pulling out in front of them. Officers saw a 10 inch black handled kitchen knife in the car's door pocket. She was fined pounds 150.

Attackers left me paralysed SCOTT BRESLIN knows Scotland's knife epidemic is a matter of life and death. He was stabbed in the neck on his way home from a party and left for dead. The attack cut his spinal cord, leaving him paralysed from the neck down and reliant on others for 24-hour care. That was eight years ago - and yesterday, he was devastated by our findings that knife crime was more rampant than ever. Scott, 24, of Penilee, Glasgow, said last night: "I am really saddened and disgusted that this kind of thing is happening. When will they learn?" David McClounnan, then 19, and William Reynolds, then 20, were jailed for the unprovoked attack on Scott but released early. Now Scott takes 32 tablets a day, suffers nightmares and has panic attacks at the thought of being unable to swat away a wasp. He said: "Knife crime is like a disease and they must find a cure. "There must be a mandatory prison sentence - maybe an automatic two year term - for anyone caught with a knife."

Thugs' top weapons THE common kitchen knife is the weapon of choice for criminals battling on Scotland's streets. The black handled knives with four inch blades were used in almost half of the attacks we detail today. Thug Patrick Bonner, of Motherwell used one in a sickening assault in Glasgow. He was given 12 months in prison. And Abukar Haji, 23, was sentenced to four months after being caught with a sharply pointed hole punch in Glasgow city centre.


No excuses: Shona Barrie warned thugs Terrifying: Hamilton is caught on CCTV making threats with sharpened dog tags Fury: Scott in wheelchair Sentenced: Regan hid a knife in her tracksuit and Hurst, below, carried an axe Deadly: Kitchen knives like this were used in most of the attacks revealed today
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Title Annotation:News; Front Page
Publication:Sunday Mail (Glasgow, Scotland)
Geographic Code:4EUUK
Date:Sep 13, 2009
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