I am aware of what happened to your son at Risdon Prison and I hate having to bring this to your attention, but it needs to be told as I feel that there has been a cover up.

Approximatley six maybe seven months ago at Hayes Prison Farm there was a terrible rape of an inmate aged approximately 18-19 years old at the time.

(The young man) had his hands tied to his feet with black plastic garden ties, and was raped by six inmates. He also had the handle part of a barbell insert into his anus.

An inmate found the boy crying in his cell and advised him to tell a custodial officer, so that he could get medical help and protection. (The young man) did so, but the officers he told did not inform the manager until approximately 3 weeks later, and apparently the manager was furious with them for not informing him straight away.

(The young man) was transferred to the prison hospital, then transferred to the Launceston Remand Centre. He has since been released from prison.

I have been told that this was not the first sexual assault to occur on the boy.

A reply from the Office of the Attorney-General:

Firstly I must assure you that there has been no cover-up associated with this incident(s).

Prison management are certainly aware of this (although not in as much graphic detail) and have tried, along with Tas Police to get (the young man) to make a formal complaint to the police – in fact (the young man) has requested that there be no police action or action by the Prison Service. We have to respect his request. Given that, we are unable to pursue the perpetrators in any way – although I believe they are ‘known’.

I’m sorry Vicki, I am unable to comment further on this but as I wrote above, please be assured that there has been no cover up.

Office of the Attorney General
Minister for Justice & Industrial Relations
Minister for Environment & Planning

Vickie Douglas is a campaigner with Prison Action Reform Group. Her son committed suicide in prison after being raped.