Thugs admit roles in horror attack at Trinity newsagent

Tahir Ahmed in his shop on South Trinity Road. Picture: Ian Georgeson

Tahir Ahmed in his shop on South Trinity Road. Picture: Ian Georgeson

A SHOPKEEPER hacked with a machete in a savage robbery bid has welcomed his attacker’s conviction – yet admitted he remains traumatised more than a year on.

Tahir Ahmed – known as Joe – suffered a fractured skull in the vicious attack at his Trinity newsagents back in December 2015.

Liam McMeechan admitted his role in the incident. Picture; contributed

Liam McMeechan admitted his role in the incident. Picture; contributed

Liam McMeechan and David Allan admitted their roles in the botched raid at the High Court in Edinburgh yesterday.

“I’m glad they’ve pleaded guilty but this has also left a mark on my life – I was psychologically damaged as well as physically,” said Tahir, 55.

“When I’m in the shop, I’m always looking out for something or someone.

“It’s taken a long time to get to this stage but I’m glad that it’s done and they’ve pleaded guilty.”

Tahir, a shopkeeper for 30 years, recalled the terrifying moment his attackers burst into A&A Newsagents in South Trinity Road.

“It all happened so quickly,” he said.

“He started hitting me straight away without asking for money. I could see the weapon, I was thinking I was going to die as I was getting hit over the head with it.”

And of the battle to recover emotionally from the attack, Tahir said: “I didn’t go for counselling because I wanted to deal with it in my own way.

“I want to get this out of my life and to get on with my life but it does affect me still. I have headaches and am still taking painkillers.

“My family come in and make sure I’m OK and we’ve had CCTV put in the shop. I have to work, I can’t just stay at home.

“This was the fourth time I was robbed, but was by far the most serious and horrendous one that happened.

“There seems to be more of this type of thing happening – I don’t know whether it’s because people are desperate.”

McMeechan, 23, pleaded guilty to assault to severe injury, permanent disfigurement and attempted robbery. Allan, 50, admitted assault and attempted robbery.

It was McMeechan who attacked Tahir with the machete before both men tried to steal cash from the store.

The pair fled after Tahir fought back. He was treated in hospital for a fractured skull and cuts to his head.

Detectives from Edinburgh launched a manhunt and arrested Allan in August last year before swooping on McMeechan the following month.

“This was a terrifying ordeal for the shopkeeper, who suffered some horrific injuries while bravely fending off both men,” said DCI Martin MacLean.

“Their willingness to utilise a dangerous weapon demonstrates McMeechan and Allan’s violent nature and thanks to the evidence 
provided by the victim and other witnesses we were able to secure convictions for the pair of them.

“I would like to thank all of those who provided vital assistance with this investigation, which undoubtedly helped bring these men to justice.”

andy.shipley@jpress.co.uk