A GANG of feral youths who brutally murdered a vulnerable pensioner in his Prestonfield home in a frenzied attack were today given life sentences.
Brute Keirin McMillan, now 20, was ordered to serve at least 18 years in jail after killing 67-year-old Alasdair Forsyth in a vicious assault. He was 19 at the time of the appalling attack.
His younger brother Aron, now 17, who was 16 when he took part in the fatal attack was told he would serve a minimum of 17 years and three months.
His friend Levi Hunter or Brown was ordered to serve at least 17 years for the killing. Hunter, now 16, was just 15 when he took part in the murder and robbery of Mr Forsyth at the flat in Clearburn Road where he lived alone.
A judge told the trio at the High Court in Edinburgh: "Mr Forsyth suffered the most terrible injuries. He sustained a total of 80 injuries and died of blunt force chest trauma."
Lord Uist said: "It is a scandal in a supposedly civilised society that a man should meet his death in this manner."
"The attack on Mr Forsyth was a planned robbery in which each of you took a tool to be used as a weapon, namely a screwdriver, a wrench and a hammer, and battered him to death in his home," he said.
Lord Uist said: "Fortunately, neighbours who heard a disturbance in Mr Forsyth's flat phoned the police who were quick to arrive on the scene and apprehended all three of you as you made off."
The judge said it was concerning that the older McMillan brother had previously broken into the home of a senior citizen in 2015 and assaulted and robbed him while acting with others.
McMillan was originally given a community payback order for that crime.
Lord Uist told the older brother that it was clear he was "the leader of this gang of thugs". He said: "You lied about your involvement in the crime and have shown no remorse."
The judge told the younger brother, who was on bail at the time of the murder, that there had been concerns about his violent behaviour since he was six years old.
Lord Uist said to Hunter: "Although you are the youngest of the three you were by no means a young innocent led astray."
He pointed out that Hunter has been taking drugs since the age of 11 and at the time was in care and subject to a compulsory supervision order.
The judge said he was satisfied that it was in the interests of justice that any report of the court proceedings should be able to reveal the names of the two younger murderers.
Up until today they could not be identified because they were offenders aged under 18.
The trio were sentenced at the High Court in Edinburgh with a large police presence in the courtroom.
The McMillan brothers and Hunter had earlier denied murdering Mr Forsyth, a former Edinburgh University student, at his in Clearburn Road, in the city's Prestonfield area on February 21 last year.
All three were found guilty of the crime following a trial last year and the two younger killers were also convicted of a violent crime spree in the days leading up to the murder in which children and adults were attacked in Edinburgh.
After he was detained Aron McMillan made a phone call from a youth jail in which he was recorded as saying that the attack on Mr Forsyth was for money. He added: "We were all just out our nut."
Stewart Ronnie, the prosecutor at the trial, told jurors: "This was a brutal, sustained attack on a 67-year-old man in his home, involving weapons and involving all three accused."
The trio attacked their victim with a screwdriver, hammer, wrench, his walking stick and picture frames and kicked and stamped on him. The victim sustained extensive rib fractures amongst an array of injuries.
Keirin McMillan had brought tools to a neighbour's house before the attack and repeatedly talked about their being money in books at the victim's home.
But the robbery failed to net them cash and instead they stole a mobile phone and tablet from their victim. Police officers who responded to emergency calls went into the stairwell and heard "excited" male voices coming down the stairs before they met the blood-stained killers.
Defence counsel Victoria Dow told the court that Keirin McMillan maintained his denial of the crime.
Matt Jackson QC, for the younger McMillan brother, said he came out of care about six months before the violent attacks and was leading a life "without any boundaries".
Mr Jackson said he had taken drugs on the night of the murder and added: "He had not taken street valium previously."
His older brother had originally faced a charge of supplying him with diazepam, but that was dropped during the trial.
Defence counsel Lorenzo Alonzi, for Hunter, asked the judge to take into account his young age and the very difficult start he had in life.