A transsexual man serving a life sentence for manslaughter and attempted rape has won a transfer to a women’s prison.
A High Court judge ruled that it was a breach of the man’s human rights to keep him in the male prison, where he has been held in an area for ‘vulnerable prisoners’.
But the Department of Justice argued that the prisoner would be no more likely to find acceptance in a female jail, and that the long periods of segregation he would require could cost £80,000 per year.
The 27-year-old has undergone hormone treatment, reportedly at the expense of the taxpayer. His sex has also been changed on his birth certificate.
The prisoner said in his evidence: “That felt like an important stage. No one can take my female status away from me.
“Till the day I die I will be a woman.
“For me it is simply a reflection of how it should have been from the start.
“The start was a mistake and now it is being put right.”
However, he could not have full gender reassignment surgery while still housed in the male prison, and High Court judge David Elvin ruled that keeping him there was a breach of his human right to a private and family life.
The Gender Recognition Act 2004 allows a biologically normal man to become a woman in law and vice versa.
This means a man can apply for a Gender Recognition Certificate and then obtain a new birth certificate stating he was born a woman.
Under the Act a man can become a woman “for all purposes” in law.