Prisoner A

Silhouette image via Wikimedia Commons

Prisoner A, a violent male who identifies as a trans woman, was jailed for life for attempting to rape a female shop assistant in Manchester five days after being released from a manslaughter sentence in 2002.  

At the time of the attempted rape, Prisoner A was living in a women’s bail hostel having been released early on licence from a five year prison sentence imposed in 2001 for a strangling a man to death with a pair of tights. It is worth noting that Prisoner A served very little time in jail for killing someone, having been convicted in 2001 and released in 2002.

The victim, who was Prisoner A’s boyfriend at the time, had reportedly refused to pay for Prisoner A’s gender reassignment operation. 

In 2009, the High Court ruled that Prisoner A, aged 27, should be moved to a women’s prison despite a Parole Board warning that the prisoner still posed a risk of sexual offending.

Justice Secretary Jack Straw had previously refused to move the prisoner but this was over-ruled by Deputy Judge David Elvin QC, stating ‘I declare her continued detention in a male prison is in breach of her rights under Article 8 [the right to private and family life] under the European Convention on Human Rights.’

Prisoner A’s lawyer said “She lives as a woman amongst men on a vulnerable prisoners’ unit and she can’t wear what she wants or more than subtle make-up. They are an important statement of her femaleness.”

Prisoner A is reported as saying “No-one can take my female status away from me. Till the day I die I will be a woman. All that remains is surgery.” 

Judge Elvin said the prisoner had shown an ‘obsessive preoccupation’ with becoming a woman. 

The Daily Telegraph reports that prisoner A’s legal team said the attempted rape ‘was closely linked to her obsession with becoming a woman and her intense frustration at the authorities’ refusal to help her qualify for full gender reassignment surgery.’

Prisoner A’s identity was concealed in media coverage of the case by order of the High Court, but the details of offending are unique and violent enough to have been covered extensively by the media at the time of the prisoner’s original conviction and are easily located online.

You can read the High Court judgement here 

Media reports:

Daily Mail  archive

Daily Telegraph archive