Three men have been sentenced for their involvement in an aggravated burglary in Redruth that saw one of them also convicted for attempted murder.

In January a jury at Truro Crown Court returned their verdicts after nearly three days of deliberation.

They found Paul Amoah, aged 39 of Hawthorn Close, Redruth guilty of the attempted murder of Yarislav Divorkis, as well as one charge of wounding with intent.

Lee Mitchell, aged 28, of Edmond Road, Redruth, was found guilty of two charges of wounding with intent and aggravated burglary.

Gavin Smale, aged 44, Fore Street, Redruth, was found guilty of unlawful wounding and aggravated burglary.

Drug dealer Mr Divorkis, also known as Yarick, nearly died after being shot in the back by Amoah during a break-in at a property in Drump Road, Redruth last year.

Another man in the property, Terry Madden, was hit five times on the head with a hammer by Mitchell, during the incident at the house on July 6.

Now all three defendants were back before the court this lunchtime (Monday) to be sentenced by Judge Simon Carr.

Amoah was sentenced to a total of 27 years in prison. This was broken down into 27 years for attempted murder, ten years for the section 18 wounding with intent and eight years for aggravated burglary – the latter two sentences to be served concurrently (at the same time to the first).

Mitchell was sentenced to a total of nine years in prison, broken down into nine years for one section 18 wounding with intent and five years for a second wounding charge, with eight years for aggravated burglary – all to run concurrently.

The judge also issued a restraining order and order the forfeiture and destruction of the handgun and hammer.

Finally Smale was sentenced to a total of seven years in prison – two years for wounding without intent, and seven years for aggravated burglary, with both to run concurrently.

The court heard how on July 6 2023, Amoah, Mitchell, and Smale broke into a property on Drump Road in Redruth. Amoah was armed with a Baretta handgun and Mitchell a hammer.

All three men had been seen on CCTV travelling to the property in a car. Footage was played to the court which showed Smale standing on the road while both Amoah and Mitchell walked towards the property.

Eight minutes later, Amoah, Mitchell, and Smale were seen scattering away from the house leaving two men seriously injured after having been shot and bludgeoned.

The victims, who were known to the offenders, all lived in the property and had been at home when Amoah and Mitchell knocked on the back door.

One of the occupants in the house could see a figure at the back door holding a gun and raised the alarm to the other occupants just as Amoah and Mitchell started breaking down the back door.

Once inside, Amoah and Mitchell, who were wearing balaclavas, set about their violent attack with Amoah shooting one of the victims in the back as he tried to flee. Mitchell chased down another victim as he ran upstairs by hitting him repeatedly over the head with a hammer.

All the while Smale was outside acting as a lookout.

Upon hearing the commotion, a third victim barricaded himself in his room upstairs but sustained a cut to the head after one of the offenders tried to force his way into his room. The men then burgled the house taking hundreds of pounds and one of the victim’s passports.

Police were alerted by the Ambulance Service with reports that a man had been shot in the back. Armed Response Officers were sent the scene and a manhunt was underway.

Extensive CCTV trawling meant that detectives closed the net on their suspects. Smale was located and arrested in a field as he attempted to flee an address on Harmony Close, Redruth. Amoah was found a short time after hiding under a sofa at an address on Cardew Close. Mitchell was arrested the next day.

All were taken into custody, charged and remanded.

Following searches inside the property on Harmony Close, a handgun was found wrapped in cloth in a children’s toy basket. DNA evidence on the gun proved to be Amoah’s. A hammer left behind at the crime scene was found to have Mitchell’s DNA evidence on it along with the victim’s blood.

Following the shooting, the gunshot victim was rushed to hospital with life-threatening injuries and had to undergo multiple operations and blood transfusions.

The bullet, which is still lodged in the victim’s chest, had missed his heart by just 2mm. The second victim sustained a laceration to his head and arms, which were not life-threatening as a result of the hammer attack.

Detective Inspector Dave Egan, the Senior Investigating Officer in this case, said: “Amoah kept a dangerous firearm at his home without fear. He brazenly took it out on the streets and into another person’s home with the intent on causing serious harm to someone who, when faced with such a weapon, had no choice but to flee resulting in him to be shot in the back as he did so.

“The victim suffered extremely serious, life-threatening injuries, had to go through multiple operations and is extremely lucky to be alive today. He avoided being killed by a couple of millimetres.

“While firearms offences are extremely rare in this county, sadly we see all too often people losing their lives or being seriously injured through drug-related violence.

DI Egan added: “My officers worked tirelessly on this investigation to ensure the individuals responsible were brought to justice.

“I would like to thank them for their hard work and diligence in this case which shows how devastating the consequences of gun crime can be, not only on victims and their families but also the wider community.

“It should also send a message that if you arm yourself with any kind of a weapon, the chances are you will end up behind bars, seriously or fatally hurting someone, or getting seriously hurt yourself. It really isn’t worth the risk.”

Superintendence Ian Thompson, Police Commander of West Cornwall, said: “Fortunately, offences of this type and seriousness are extremely rare in Cornwall, but when they do occur this understandably causes significant concern in the local community.

“The police response to this incident was swift and professional with the suspects identified and arrested quickly. In the days and weeks that followed, local officers provided high visibility patrols to reassure the community whilst detectives pursued their investigation.

“We are extremely grateful for the support and cooperation we received from the community and our partners who pulled together and assisted police with their enquiries.

“We value and depend on the support of our communities to assist us in the fight against crime and we continue to encourage the public to report issues to us so we can improve our intelligence and proactively target criminals.”