Gunmen still at large as Darras Hall shooting probed

TWO gunmen were still at large last night after a businessman was targeted in a suburban shooting.

The scene of the shooting on Darras Hall Estate

TWO gunmen were still at large last night after a businessman was targeted in a suburban shooting.

Amjed Malik was shot in the leg by masked raiders while at the house of a close friend in Darras Hall, Ponteland, early yesterday.

The married 31-year-old, who owns an Accident Claims Specialists franchise on Newcastle’s West Road, is recovering in hospital with serious leg injuries, amid grave concern from his family.

Police confirmed they were "working hard" to identify the attackers and put the minds of families in the area at ease.

Last night, a woman who identified herself as the resident of the Middle Drive bungalow where the shooting took place told The Journal by mobile telephone that she had been moved by police for her own safety. The 29-year-old businesswoman, who is believed to be estranged from her husband and asked not to be named, told of the relief her son had not been at home when the attack took place.

She said: "I was in the kitchen of the property. I think I had been followed for three or four days. Two guys came in with double-barrelled shotguns.

"I was stood next to the gas cooker, I had just come in to get some stuff when they opened fire. It was totally, totally shocking. It was terrifying."

Police believe the male victim was intentionally targeted, but last night said they were still working to determine a motive. Officers have refused to rule anything out and have said the case appeared to be complex in nature.

Forensic teams were yesterday scrutinising every inch of the drive leading to the property for clues.

Mr Malik’s family, who live close to him in Newcastle’s West End, said he had been visiting a friend at the property when he was shot.

They had visited him in hospital where he had spoken briefly before undergoing surgery on his leg.

The extent of the injury remains unknown, but doctors have described his condition as "comfortable and not life-threatening".

Most families in the exclusive Darras Hall estate were sleeping when the shooting took place at 1.25am yesterday.

Police have appealed for information. Detective Chief Inspector Paul Young, who is leading the investigation, said: "I understand that this incident has caused concern to people living in the area and I would like to reassure them that we are working hard to identify those responsible.

"Initial inquiries indicate that this incident was directed at the victim or people close to him and as such we do not believe there is any risk to the wider community.

"The injured man runs a business in the west end of Newcastle and we are working closely with members of the community as part of this investigation."

Anyone with any information is asked to contact police on 0345 604-3043 or ring the independent charity Crimestoppers on 0800 555111.


David Whetstone
Culture Editor
Graeme Whitfield
Business Editor
Mark Douglas
Newcastle United Editor
Stuart Rayner
Sports Writer