A PAIR of armed thugs who used a shotgun to target a man at a Renfrewshire farm were yesterday convicted of attempted murder.

John Docherty, 46, and 37-year-old Don Templeton, from Johnstone, repeatedly fired the weapon at James McGurk during the terrifying attack at Crosslee Poultry Farm, near Bridge of Weir.

Mr McGurk, 42, who buys and sells cars, was shot from behind, with pellets hitting his right buttock.

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Before carrying out the attack, Templeton stopped at a Tesco petrol station in Linwood to buy fuel for his Mercedes estate.

He and his co-accused were caught on CCTV at the filling station and, just minutes later, their car was again seen on camera turning into the farm and then, shortly afterwards, driving away quickly.

Giving evidence at the High Court in Glasgow, Mr McGurk said he didn’t know who had shot him.

He added that, at the time, he was working on a car at the farm yard.

Mr McGurk told prosecutor Paul Nelson: “I can’t remember much. It is all a blur to me. I got shot from behind.

“I heard a bang and I was propelled forward.”

The Gazette: Police at the scene after the shooting took placePolice at the scene after the shooting took place

The jury was shown dramatic CCTV footage of an injured Mr McGurk staggering to the nearby farmhouse for help.

Mr McGurk told the court he didn’t think Templeton had anything to do with the shooting, which took place at around 2.30pm on October 31, 2017.

He said: “I personally don’t see him doing that to me because the two of us were pals. I told the police I didn’t know who done it.”

Mr Nelson then asked Mr McGurk: “Were you involved in anything that might make someone shoot you?”

He replied: “No.”

Mr McGurk also told the court that Templeton had been angry about tools which were stolen.

Mr Nelson put it to him: “Were you asked by Mr Templeton if you knew anyone that was stealing tools?”

He replied: “Yes.”

Mr McGurk gave a name that he passed on to Templeton and, when asked why, he added: “Because he is a thief.”

The Gazette: Police at the scene after the shooting took placePolice at the scene after the shooting took place

Pathologist Dr Marjorie Turner was asked about the potential danger of firing a shotgun at someone.

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She told the court: “If you hit the head or neck, there is a serious risk someone could die.”

Mr Nelson asked her: “Is there danger to that person’s life?”

She replied: “Yes.”

Both accused were remanded in custody by judge Lord Armstrong and will be sentenced next month.

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