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Preston men guilty of firearms offences over Ingol gun shot terror

Posted on - 27th April, 2013 - 7:00am | Author - | Posted in - Crime, News

A Preston man has been convicted of possessing a fire arm and attempted robbery.

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Ashley O’Neill, 26, of Balcarres Road, Ashton, was found guilty following a two week trial at Preston Crown Court.

It relates to a firearm being dischared in Ingol in the early hours of Tuesday 3 July 2012.

Kyle Garth, 26, from Weeton was found not guilty of attempted murder but had pleaded guilty to possessing a firearm and attempted robbery.

John Abela, 28, of Thistleton Road, Ashton, pleaded guilty to attempted robbery and possessing a firearm at an earlier hearing.

Joanna Catterall, 25, of Bowness Road, Preston, pleaded guilty to assisting an offender.

The three men were involved in firing a weapon at an address on Tag Lane leaving a window shattered.

They were seen dressed in dark clothing and balaclavas running from the scene before speeding off from the area in a Ford Focus.

Police caught the men after officers recovered a bullet from the scene and subsequent forensic evidence linked the three men to the offence.

Det Insp Paddy O’Neill of Preston CID, said: “This was a terrifying ordeal for the victim who was deliberately targeted by these men whilst he was inside his first-floor flat along with his partner.

“We take a very proactive approach in dealing with firearm incidents and the threat that those willing to use firearms pose. The professional and thorough investigation carried out by my Detectives in this case is indicative of that stance. The police nor the communities we serve will tolerate the use or threat of firearms in the county, and we will take a tough approach to anyone who feels that it is acceptable to be in possession of illegal firearms.

“Gun crime in Lancashire is comparatively rare but there are people in the communities that know those who carry or have access to guns and know where these guns are stored. It is those people to whom we appeal to come forward with information as a matter of urgency. This can be done anonymously by contacting Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.”

All four will be sentenced on June 21 at the Crown Court.

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