A biker has told a court how he was repeatedly struck with iron bars and hammers by men who tried to ‘break’ his ‘knees’.

Nicky Syratt, 34, told a jury how he and a group of his friends were attacked on the A98 road, close to Cullen, Moray, on September 8 2018.

The High Court in Edinburgh heard how Mr Syratt and his pals had earlier been enjoying a bike ride.

But Mr Syratt said he had to suddenly stop his motorbike after seeing debris on the road.

He then said he was attacked from behind and struck with weapons which caused him to lose consciousness.

Mr Syratt then said he can remember being hit on the lower body with the weapons.

He said: “They also struck my legs with hammers and iron bars. They were trying to break my knees.”

Mr Syratt was giving evidence on the second day of proceedings against four men accused of assaulting him and placing his life in danger.

The quartet are Ian Ewing, 44, of Stonehaven, Aberdeenshire, Patrick Noble, 52, of Aberdeen, Kyle Urquhart, 22, also of Aberdeen, and Ian Yeomans, 57, of Peterhead, Aberdeenshire.

Emergency services on the scene at the A98 at Cullen on Saturday, September 8, 2018

The four accused are also standing trial on further charges of attempted murder, assault to the endangering of lives, breach of the peace and possessing knives without “reasonable excuse or lawful authority”.

The men deny all charges.

On Friday, Mr Syratt wasn’t present in court room number three of the High Court in Edinburgh to give evidence. He gave his testimony from another location by video link.

Mr Syratt told prosecution lawyer Andrew Bowen QC that he had spent the day riding with his friends Alistair Thompson, Colin Sutherland, John Sutherland, and Edward Forrest.

The group were riding out of Cullen, Moray, moments before the alleged offences took place.

Mr Syratt, who gave his address as being care of Police Scotland, said that he suddenly had to stop after seeing debris on the road.

He told the court that he saw Mr Forrest being assaulted by “several guys”.

He added: “They had weapons. I saw a hammer, a metal bar. They had heavy metal objects mostly.”

Mr Syratt, who is currently unemployed, said he thought there were four men assaulting his friend.

He said he got off his bike with the intention of going to help his friend. But he said he was “attacked from behind” and repeatedly struck by the men who had weapons.

He said: “The last thing I can remember was a young guy telling me he was going to kill me.

“I went in and out of consciousness.”

A Coastguard helicopter arrives to take injured people to Aberdeen Hospital after the incident on the A98 at Cullen

He also said that one of his attackers had a blade and they cut off a piece of clothing that he was wearing.

Mr Syratt added: “They had a knife. Someone had a knife and they cut off my leather waistcoat.”

He said that he needed some medical treatment and still hasn’t fully recovered from what happened to him.

Mr Syratt added: “I do have some psychological issues and have some trepidation about somethings.”

His friend Edward Forrest, 54, told Mr Bowen that he had been riding a little while back from his friends.

He said that he had to stop his Harley Davidson bike because he thought he had arrived at a road traffic accident.

The security guard, who also gave his evidence by video link, said he could see Colin Sutherland lying on the ground.

Mr Forrest then told the court that he was “pulled off” his bike and assaulted.

He said: “I got attacked and struck with implements to my head, legs and body.”

Mr Forrest also told the court that he tried to stop himself from being injured. He said he was wearing an open faced helmet.

He added: “I was trying to cover my head and body. I was knocked unconscious. I don’t know happened. The next thing I remember was that I woke up and it was utter chaos.”

He told the jury that one of his friends was after the assault, he was taken to hospital and treated for injuries. Mr Forrest said that among the injuries he had a fractured skull and had sustained a stab wound to his leg.

The four men are standing trial on a total of seven charges.

Prosecutors claim that on September 8, 2018, at the A98 Fochabers to Banff Road at Cullen, Moray, the four men did, while acting with others, assault a man called Alistair Thompson.

It’s claimed that Mr Thompson was riding a motorcycle and that they drove a car at him before attempting to knock him off his bike. Prosecutors also claim that by doing this, they attempted to murder Mr Thompson.

Prosecutors also claim that on the same date and at the same location, they wore masks over their faces and assaulted Colin Sutherland.

It’s claimed that they drove a car at Mr Sutherland, collided with him “at speed” and this caused him to fall from his bike and lose consciousness.

Prosecutors say they then repeatedly struck Mr Sutherland on the head and body with a claw hammer, a tyre iron, and a baseball bat before repeatedly kicking him on the body.

It’s claimed they then cut Mr Sutherland’s clothing with a knife and that they attempted to murder him.

The third charge states they also attempted to murder another man called John Sutherland at the same location and on the same date.

The Crown also claims that on the same date and at the same location, they assaulted a man called Edward Forrest by repeatedly striking him on the head and body with a claw hammer which rendered him unconscious.

Prosecutors say these alleged actions were to Mr Forrest’s “severe injury, permanent disfigurement and to the danger” of his life.

They are also alleged to have assaulted Nicky Syratt to “his injury and danger of his life” on the same date and same location.

Prosecutors also say the four men committed a breach of the peace on the same date and at the same location by having their “faces masked” and by brandishing weapons and behaving aggressively.

Prosecutors also claim that on September 8 2018 at the A96 road, near to Inveramsay Bridge near Inverurie, Aberdeenshire, Mr Yeomans had “without reasonable excuse or lawful authority” two lock knives in his possession.

The four men have pleaded not guilty to all charges.

The trial, before judge Lady Scott, continues.

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