Transgender rapist Isla Bryson complains male prison is 'full of transphobic people'


A man has been charged after Isla Bryson - the sex offender who was at the centre of the trans rights row that heaped pressure on Nicola Sturgeon before she quit as Scotland's First Minster - complained of suffering from 'transphobic' abuse in a male prison.

Double-rapist Bryson, born Adam Graham, was initially sent to a women's prison. After a huge public outcry, Bryson was moved to HMP Edinburgh, a prison for men.

Now the 31-year-old is complaining that the all-male jail is “full of transphobic people” and claims to have had "abuse to do with my gender". Police Scotland has confirmed that a 24-year-old man has been charged with threatening and abusive behaviour after a hate crime was reported in the Prison in June.

In letters sent to a national newspaper, Bryson demanded £1,000 for an interview - and moaned: "People won’t stop being transphobic."

Bryson - who has been sentenced to eight years for sex offences - complained: “I’m not doing too good because of abuse from the staff members all because I am transgender and other prisoners too.

“This jail is full of transphobic people. The police are involved because of the abuse to do with my gender. People won’t stop being transphobic.”

Bryson - who was convicted of raping two women in 2016 and 2019, in similar circumstances - only started using the name Isla and transitioning after being charged by police. The case sparked outrage after the rapist was initially kept in an all-female prison, forcing an intervention from the Scottish Government.

The then first minister, Nicola Sturgeon, told MSPs that “this prisoner will not be incarcerated at Cornton Vale women’s prison”, with Bryson moved to the male prison estate. She said at the time that there is “no automatic right for a trans woman convicted of a crime to serve their sentence in a female prison”.

Speaking in February Sturgeon said that each case is “subject to rigorous individual risk assessment” in which the “safety of other prisoners is paramount”. However, she refused to be drawn on whether she believed Bryson was a man or a woman - but did use female pronouns when referring to the sex offender.

Sturgeon said: “She [Bryson] regards herself as a woman. I regard the individual as a rapist.”

It was later announced that the Scottish Prison Service was carrying out a review of the management of trans prisoners as part of its gender identity and gender reassignment policy review.