Men guilty of abduction and extortion bid
A venture capital firm owner and a director in a security and surveillance business have been found guilty after a former stockbroker was abducted and assaulted in an extortion bid.
Former bank manager Steven Green, 43, and his co-accused Alan Dambrosio, 51, were warned to expect "significant prison sentences" next month.
Green and Dambrosio had denied assaulting the victim on 25 April 2014.
The 55-year-old was attacked at West Philpstoun Steadings in West Lothian.
Remanded in custody
Green ran Pentland Capital and held an interest in Glencairn Risk Solutions, which was co-owned by Dambrosio.
The pair had been on bail throughout their trial at the High Court in Edinburgh but after a jury convicted them of the offence on majority verdicts a judge remanded them in custody.
Green, from Kirkliston on the outskirts of Edinburgh, and Dambrosio, from Edinburgh, had both denied any involvement in the assault.
Lord Uist told them: "The jury, who were not taken in by your obvious lies in the witness box, have convicted both of you of a very serious crime of violence.
"You should be in no doubt that when I come to sentence you, after having received the appropriate reports, a significant prison sentence will be passed on each of you."
The judge rejected defence pleas that both men be allowed to continue on bail ahead of sentencing next month to "put their affairs in order".
The pair were found guilty with others unknown of assaulting the victim. He was repeatedly struck on the head and body with a weapon and forced into a van.
He was bound with tape and hooded and repeatedly hit on the head and body and had bleach poured on him and was robbed of items such as a wallet and threatened with violence if money was not paid to Green within seven days.
The man said the purchase of the bridging loan business previously owned by Green had been completed in November 2013 with a price tag of £800,000.
He said the money had not been paid and it was agreed to settle once some of its loans had been redeemed and the fund behind it was back of an even keel.
Advocate depute Jim Keegan QC asked the victim what he had thought was going to happen to him during the ordeal and he told the court: "I didn't think I was going to come back out of that, quite honestly. I thought I was going to die, quite frankly."
He had turned up for a morning meeting with Green at a garden centre but it was closed and he was invited back to Green's office at the steading buildings and updated him on a meeting he had held in the Isle of Man.
The former stockbroker, who had been involved in a £800,000 purchase of a bridging loan firm from Green, made his way back to his vehicle but was attacked.
He said a van had pulled up near Green's vehicle with three people round about it. He said: "I thought they were going to wash Steve's car. I thought it was a mobile valet."
"I walked past it and then the next thing I knew I had a very large hit on the back of my head," he said. He added: "I had two guys on my back trying to pull me back to the van, hitting me with a billy club or truncheon."
The attack victim estimated he was hit 30 to 40 times.
He was then let go after being told he had "seven days to get the money".