Price handcuffed during hospital switch
A lawyer acting for internee Marian Price has accused the Six County prison authorities of being “inhumane” after she was handcuffed while travelling in an ambulance between two Belfast hospitals.
Peter Corrigan said the seriously ill political dissident had been handcuffed by prison officers yesterday as she was taken from Belfast City Hospital to the nearby Musgrave Park Hospital, despite protests from her family and medical staff.
In June she was transferred from Hydebank Wood Prison to Belfast City Hospital after a sharp deterioration in her mental and physical health. She was recently diagnosed with advanced pneumonia.
Ms Price was summarily imprisoned by the British authorities last year following a republican rally in Derry.
Her lawyer last night said he intended to complain over the abuse.
“She was being brought to Musgrave for further treatment,” Mr Corrigan said.
“The medical staff were telling them not to handcuff her and we were telling them no as well but someone at Hydebank prison decided this was going to happen.
“This woman is not well and should not be treated like this.
“It is inhumane and we will be complaining at the highest level.”
PRISONERS ON TRIAL
Meanwhile, eight other republican prisoners and three former prisoners, including prominent County Armagh activist Colin Duffy, have been put on trial this week, charged with damaging their cells during a protest at Maghaberry prison.
It is alleged the men damaged their cells on the republican wing in May last year as part of a protest against strip searches and the criminalisation of political prisoners.
In the end, the prosecution could not open the case because a witness was on holiday, while the defence complained that video evidence against the men had not been made available to them.
The eight prisoners appeared in court with long hair and beards as a result of a ‘no wash’ protest against prison conditions.
There was a heavy PSNI presence as the prisoners’ supporters protested outside Belfast Laganside court.
Spokesman for the group Mr Conway said: “David Ford has agreed with the recommendation to do away with strip searches so the argument for the protest has already been won.
“For the duration of this trial eight prisoners will be forcibly strip searched twice a day.
“The protest could end tomorrow if the correct technology was implemented with the prisoners’ agreement.”