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#297234 - 3rd Mar 2009 10:36pm Family shooting terror in Southport suburbia

Family shooting terror in Southport suburbia

TERRIFIED family members of a well-known Merseyside businessman were trapped inside their home when a gunman opened fire.

The Southport home of entrepreneur John Ball was targeted on Monday night.

One of his business interests, EEC Security, was also petrol bombed. Merseyside Police yesterday cordoned off the family home while a patrol car guarded his Hall Street home security business in Southport town centre.

Mr Ball is believed to have left his house moments before shots were fired.

A neighbour said: "We heard bangs, at about quarter to 11 last night but we just thought they were fireworks going off. We went to sleep and when I got up the next morning there were lots of police cars outside and the road was cordoned off. The police have been up and down the road all day.

"We don't really know what has happened.

"It's come as quite a shock."

The house in Selworthy Road came under attack at around 10.25pm yesterday.

At least one bullet was said to have pierced a front window.

It is believed some seven bullet casings were found outside the house by forensic officers called to the scene.

Mr Ball's car reportedly had its tyres shot out in the attack.

The businessman's house is close to the homes of ex-football stars Kenny Dalglish and Alan Hansen.

A Merseyside Police spokesman said: “We are investigating reports of shots fired at a house in Selworthy Road, Southport, last night.

“Officers were called to the scene at around 10.25pm following reports of shots being fired at a house.

“No-one was injured and inquiries are ongoing at this time.”

“Crime Scene Investigators are in attendance at the scene to carry out forensic examinations and house-to-house enquiries are being carried out.”

Anyone who may have information in relation to the incident is asked to Call the Gun Crime hotline on 0800 458 1211. or Crimestoppers on 0800 555111.


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#297296 - 4th Mar 2009 10:41am Crosby and Birkdale businessmen shot at [Re: ]

Crosby and Birkdale businessmen shot at in possible linked attacks

TWO business associates involved in a million-pound property deal have come under fire from gangsters.

Both property developer Terry Riley and entrepreneur John Ball have been targeted by thugs with guns and petrol bombs.

Mr Ball’s luxury home in Selworthy Road, Birkdale, and his security company office in Southport were attacked on Monday night.

At around 10.25pm, Mr Ball’s family were pinned inside their home by a hail of bullets.

He had just left and it is believed found the tyres on his car shot out.

As many as seven bullet casings are thought to have been found outside Mr Ball’s home by forensic officers. At least one bullet pierced the front window of the house.

One neighbour, who did not want to be named, said: “I thought it was fireworks at first – the last thing you expect is for shots to be fired at your neighbour.”

Another neighbour said: “I heard a lot of noise and then I was disturbed by the flashing blue lights of the police cars and then they cordoned off the road.

“It's terrifying, though”

Around half-an-hour after the shooting, the offices of EEC Security, in Hall Street, Southport, went up in flames. A window was broken and petrol poured inside before it was lit.

Police said yesterday they were investigating possible links to a similar attack on the Crosby home of Mr Riley in January.

As he left his home on Elm Avenue at around 10.20pm, the property was shot at. A petrol bomb was then found near his black 4x4.

Mr Riley and Mr Ball were involved in the change of hands of Shorrocks Country Club, in Lifeboat Road, Formby, in 2005.

Mr Riley’s The Ascot Group paid £1m to take the nightclub, restaurant and leisure facility from Mr Ball.

No-one was injured in either attack.

A Merseyside Police spokeswoman said: “It is being considered as part of the investigation as to whether the two shooting incidents are linked.”

The Selworthy Road area is a veritable “millionaires row” with former LFC legends Kenny Dalglish and Alan Hansen both living nearby.

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