Musselburgh man who had rock dropped on head was left for dead after gang attacked him with poles and knives

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An armed gang who hunted a man down in the street in a brutal Hogmanay attack were warned that they face 'significant' jail sentences.

Rhys Reynolds (26) was chased and put to the ground by a six-strong pack.

Rhys Reynolds (26) after he was viciously attacked (left) and before the assault

Rhys Reynolds (26) after he was viciously attacked (left) and before the assault

He suffered multiple knife wounds, facial fractures and bleeding to the brain in the ensuing onslaught.

He was repeatedly punched, kicked and stamped on, struck with knives and a metal pole and had a rock dropped on him during the assault at Delta Drive, Musselburgh, in East Lothian, on December 31 last year.

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Unemployed Aaron Thomson (20) of Musselburgh, jobless Kane Reilly (18) of Prestonpans and Dillin Armstrong (24) from Haddington, all East Lothian, were today convicted of attempting to murder him.

A 16-year-old youth, who cannot be identified for legal reasons, was also found guilty of the murder bid.

A fifth accused unemployed Jayson Dodds (19) of Musselburgh, was convicted of a lesser charge of assault to injury. A sixth man Dean Riding or Renton (22) earlier admitted his role in the crime and did not stand trial with the others.

A judge told the accused at the High Court in Edinburgh: "It is highly likely that all of you will end up with significant custodial sentences."

Judge Gordon Liddle said: "Four out of assault five of you have been convicted of attempted murder, which is murder that did not actually result in death."

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The High Court trial was held at the city's sheriff courthouse and ended amid tight security.

The jury delivered its verdicts in a court closed to the public with four of those in the dock secured by handcuffs.

The courtroom was switched because the original venue was contaminated with blood after a disturbance before the judge and jury came into court.

The trial heard that an experienced doctor reviewed photographs of the injured man after the assault and concluded he was the victim of "a significant and vicious attack".

The gang went after Mr Reynolds following a disturbance outside an address. The attack on him was largely caught on camera and the jury were shown footage of it.

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Advocate depute Richard Goddard QC told jurors that the accused "joined together to commit a brutal and cowardly attack on a man in a public street".

One woman witness said: "It was awful. I thought they were going to kill him the way they were attacking him."

Another witness told police: "If you don't get here quick someone is going to be dead."

During the assault Riding was seen striking the victim with a rock, Mr Goddard said.

Sentence was deferred until next month for the preparation of background reports.