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Acid attackers jailed after leaving three badly burned

Steven Marshall, 22, and James Smith, 25, attacked their victims at a flat in Cumbernauld.

Attackers: James Smith and Steven Marshall.
Attackers: James Smith and Steven Marshall. Spindrift

Two men have been jailed for eight years each after leaving three people badly burned in an acid attack.

Steven Marshall, 22, and James Smith, 25, kicked down the door of a flat in Cumbernauld, North Lanarkshire, claiming they were owed £1000 for a cocaine debt.

When the householder failed to emerge, three men who were at a party in the flat went out to investigate.

Marshall then shouted "skoosh them", to which Smith then sprayed a bottle of acid over the men.

Stephen Hose, 23, was left with horrific injuries to his face, and Jake McLaughlin, 26, had burns to his legs, an arm and the back of his head. David Abernethy, 22, was also burnt on one arm.

Marshall and Smith, both from Cumbernauld, were convicted after trial of pouring acid over their victims to their severe injury and permanent disfigurement.

Cumbernauld: The attack happened in Oak Road.
Cumbernauld: The attack happened in Oak Road. Google 2019

Both Marshall and Smith had their faces masked during the attack, which happened in Oak Road, Abronhill, on October 14, 2017.

At the High Court in Aberdeen, judge Lord Clark told them: "This was acid of the highest strength which, when it comes into contact with skin, corrodes and consumes it.

"The acid caused the three victims to feel immediate burning of their skin, resulting in serious injury and rough scarring to the arms and body, and in the case of one of them damage to his face.

"The use of acid to attack people is cruel and barbaric and can have particularly damaging consequences, physical and psychological, for the victims."

'I've got better things to do with my time than going about attacking people with acid'
James Smith, the accused

Both men denied any involvement and continue to protest their innocence.

Smith, in evidence at the High Court in Glasgow during his trial, told prosecutor David Taylor: "I've got better things to do with my time than going about attacking people with acid."

During the trial, the three victims described the attack.

Mr Hose said: "I felt my skin burning. I was in agony."

Mr McLaughlin added: "I was in my boxers in the bath and someone was pouring water over me."

At University Hospital Monklands in Airdrie, medical staff put him in a shower for two hours to wash the corrosive acid away.

Mr Abernethy told the court: "James Smith was the person that attacked me.

"There was a shout of 'skoosh him, skoosh them', and then the acid was thrown from a container."

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