A group of teenagers have been convicted for their parts in vicious knife attacks on two teenage boys in a Peterborough play park.

At 5.46pm on May 31 last year, police received two 999 calls reporting stabbings in the park area of Century Square, Millfield.

On police arrival, they found an 18-year-old man collapsed on the ground receiving first aid by members of the public, and a 17-year-old boy with multiple stab wounds a few hundred metres away in Waterloo Road.

About 10 minutes before the 999 calls were made, 19-year-old Rudolf Gregor and a 17-year-old boy who cannot be named for legal reasons (boy A), entered a convenience store in Lincoln Road where they bought three kitchen knives.

Footage captured the shopkeeper asking the pair why they were buying the knives, to which Gregor claimed to be getting them for his mother who was hosting a barbecue.

As Gregor paid for the knives, two other 17-year-old boys who cannot be named for legal reasons (boy B and boy C), and 18-year-old Milan Pollak loitered by the entrance.

Boy A placed one of the knives in his jacket pocket and walked off with the group towards the Alma Road area, with boy B carrying the other two knives in a plastic bag.

They split into two groups as they approached Century Square, with boy A, boy B and Gregor walking ahead, and boy C and Pollak slightly behind.

At 5.42pm, the group were seen on CCTV to enter the park in Century Square – just over a minute later, they are seen leaving before making a phone call to book a taxi to take them out of the area.

In this minute, boy A, boy B and Gregor had stabbed two victims multiple times, leaving them with life-threatening injuries.

The 18-year-old suffered multiple puncture wounds to his legs, buttocks and back, severe swelling to his jaw and neck impacting on his airway, and arterial bleeding in his neck. His condition deteriorated in hospital, requiring emergency surgery after a further stab wound was discovered which had penetrated his internal organs.

The 17-year-old suffered an arterial bleed to his left arm, as well as two puncture wounds to his back, one of which was close to his spinal column, requiring immediate emergency surgery.

Immediate enquiries led officers from the local Neighbourhood Support Team to Gregor’s home in Midland Road where they saw a taxi leaving. It was stopped and found to have boy C, from Hampton, and two other men inside.

All three were arrested, with boy C saying “how did you lot find us so quickly? How did you track us down?”

The following day (June 1), Gregor was arrested at his home.

Boy B was arrested at his home in Orton Goldhay in the early hours of  June 2 after he called police to say he was at home and aware police were looking for him.

The same day, police issued a wanted appeal to locate Pollak, of Shakespeare Avenue, New England. Within a matter of hours, he had contacted police to hand himself in and was arrested.

On June 3, boy A was arrested after handing himself in at Thorpe Wood Police Station. His home in Bretton was searched where a machete was found in his bedroom.

All five answered “no comment” in interview but were charged with two counts of attempted murder and possession of a knife in a public place.

No further action was taken against the two passengers found in the taxi with boy C.

Following a five-week trial at Cambridge Crown Court which ended on March 16, Gregor, boy A and boy B were all found guilty of two counts of attempted murder and possession of a bladed article.

Boy C and Pollak were cleared of those charges but found guilty of two counts of assault with intent to cause grievous harm (GBH, with intent).

Detective Constable Lloyd Davis, who investigated, said: “This was an incredibly complex case and it was sheer luck it didn’t end up as a murder investigation.

“This attack has resulted in two young men being so close to losing their lives, and five now looking at a lengthy prison sentence.

“I would encourage anyone concerned about a young person becoming involved in criminality to speak to police or partner agencies so we can intervene.”

All five are due to be sentenced at Cambridge Crown Court on May 19.