Fears grow over Edinburgh's gangland warfare as West Pilton Grove attempted murder is latest in string of violent attacks

The attempted murder of a gangland figure in Edinburgh is being investigated as part of an ongoing feud between rivals in the city.

Wednesday, 23rd June 2021, 2:07 pm
Updated Wednesday, 23rd June 2021, 2:14 pm

A 34-year-old man was found seriously injured in a common stairwell at West Pilton Grove around 5pm last Friday. The man was taken to the Royal Infirmary for treatment.

The Daily Record reports that the victim is Russell Scammell, who was jailed in 2009 for the abduction and torture of a teenager. The newspaper reports he has been involved in a feud with another gang and was left with serious slash wounds to his head, shoulders, arms and legs.

Police sources told the Record that detectives are probing links between the attack on Scammell and a machete attack on Jason Smith at Fort Kinnaird earlier this month, which left Smith in a critical condition.

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Police launched an attempted murder appeal following the attack in a common stairwell in West Pilton Grove. Pic: Google
Police launched an attempted murder appeal following the attack in a common stairwell in West Pilton Grove. Pic: Google

One source told the newspaper that “Edinburgh is a tinderbox just now” with organised crime groups “fighting each other over petty feuds.”

The source added: “There will be retaliation for this attack. It’s like being on a merry-go-round – one gets attacked, they retaliate and on it goes.”

The source said police will be checking CCTV but said the difficulty lies in those involved cooperating with police.

Officers are appealing to anyone who saw a dark blue Volkswagen Golf GTI being driving at speed in the Drylaw area before the incident and being driven erratically at Sheriffhall Roundabout around 5.30pm.

A similar vehicle was later found set alight later that evening.

Detective Inspector Alison MacDonald said: "We are keen to speak to anyone who saw the vehicle or who may have dashcam or private CCTV footage showing this vehicle.

"We would also be keen to hear from anyone with information about a similar car which was set alight near Shawfair railway station later during the evening on Friday, 18 June.

"Extensive enquiries are ongoing to establish the circumstances surrounding this incident and anyone with any information can call 101, quoting incident 2690 of 18 June or call Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111."

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