FOUR teenagers, one aged just 13, were arrested during a series of early morning raids as police closed in on gang fighters following a mass rammy.

Senior officers took the action after three youths were left seriously injured from stab wounds when trouble erupted between rival gangs in a South Lanarkshire hotspot.

The Evening Times joined officers as four youngsters were arrested in Carmyle, near Cambuslang, early yesterday.

Police arrested a 13-year-old, a 17-year-old and two 16-year-olds in connection with the attempted murder of three youths.

All four are due to appear at Glasgow Sheriff Court today.

The arrests were the first of an ongoing investigation into the incident in Westburn Road on Friday, April 27 around 8pm. Police hope the arrests will send out a strong message to those involved in gang fights and warned that people will be brought to justice.

Three youths, aged 15, 16, and 17 years old were stabbed during a gang fight on the border of Carmyle and Westburn.

The areas are linked by a bridge which can be a focal point for gangs Carmyle Tahiti and Westburn Toi.

Last month the long-running battle for territory bubbled over and trouble broke out near a supermarket in Westburn Road, on the Westburn side.

Around 20 to 30 youths were involved and it left three in hospital. All three have since been released.

Senior police officers described the injuries as the most severe they had seen in a number of years and the arrests send out a message that the gang fighting culture will not be tolerated in communities.

DS Alan Bankier, of Rutherglen CID, said: "This is the result of a large scale inquiry to identify those involved.

"We are grateful to the local community who have come forward with information and we hope they will see we have acted upon it.

"This was one of the worst incidents I have seen in several years in terms of the severity of the injuries which left three people seriously injured."

THE Evening Times had access to the operation as it got under way when weeks of groundwork and intelligence culminated in the day of action.

Around 30 officers, including local officers and those from the dedicated gangs taskforce, were briefed by detectives.

We watched as teams set off from the station and a fleet of vehicles headed off for the Carmyle area where some of the alleged culprits were from.

Four addresses were simultaneously targeted – we joined one team as it went to an address in Inzievar Terrace.

Officers knocked on the door around 7am and were greeted by a family member.

Two officers then entered the property and moments later a 16-year-old youth was led out in handcuffs with his t-shirt pulled over his face.

Searches were also carried out during the specialised operation in a bid to find weapons used in the fight.

Arrests were made at three other addresses.

Gang fights between Carmyle and Westburn over territory have been taking place for decades.

But the battles that have come down the generations could one day have fatal consequences.

Gang members think nothing of being armed for the clashes with knives, baseball bats and even golf clubs.

THE railway bridge has traditionally been an area where the gangs meet as it provides a link to both areas.

Since last month's incident, extra police patrols have been carried out in the area and there has been no repeat of the brutal clash.

Chief Inspector Craig Ritchie, of Rutherglen Police Office, said: "Violence and disorder at this level will not be tolerated and will be dealt with robustly and as harshly as we possibly can.

"We are hopeful that the arrests we have made send out a strong message that we will track down those involved in this incident.

"There is no doubt that when people are involved in this kind of serious activity there can be fatal cons- equences. Those involved need to be able to answer for their actions and accept the consequences."

"This incident was part of ongoing territorial issues.

"It is vital that the public in Westburn and Carmyle are reassured that we won't tolerate this kind of behaviour."