Five transgender convicts who were born male have been transferred to a women’s jail, raising questions about the safety of female prisoners.
Four of the group have not fully transitioned and it’s been claimed their arrival has left women inmates and some prison staff feeling ‘anxious and vulnerable’.
The transgender criminals have been relocated to New Hall prison near Wakefield in Yorkshire, northern England, which has a population of 425 female prisoners.
A source told the Sun newspaper: “Two or three of the transgender prisoners are in the general population. They are physically male and one is in for ABH [Actual Bodily Harm]. Staff and prisoners are feeling threatened. Some say they feel they could be beaten up, although the transgender prisoners have not misbehaved. But there are a lot of vulnerable women in there.”
The newspaper reported that in 2014 one of the transgender inmates had their home stormed by police who specialize in terrorism. Officers found grenades, bullets and explosives.
In March Heat Street reported that a double rapist who is in line for a publicly-funded sex change operation had been moved to a women’s jail.
Father-of-three Martin Ponting, who has started hormone treatment, was jailed for life in 1995 after attacking two girls.
Having decided to live as a woman, Ponting, now 50 years old, has changed his name to Jessica Winfield and been granted a gender recognition certificate by a doctor – which is necessary for an acquired gender to be legally recognized.
Winfield is currently serving time in the women’s jail HM Prison Bronzefield in Surrey and is hoping to be released this year.