Surgeon refuses reassignment surgery for jailed transgender murderer The Times 25.01.21

The original article is here.

A murderer has been stopped from having gender reassignment surgery while behind bars after a surgeon refused to carry out the operation.

Paris Green is serving a life sentence for a torturing and beating a man lured to her flat with two accomplices.

When she was convicted of the crime in 2013 she was known by her birth name, Peter Laing, but now lives as a woman in a Scottish prison.

The 29-year-old had hoped to become the first prisoner to undergo gender reassignment surgery while serving a jail term.

The prison service approved the procedure, which was to be paid for by the NHS but performed at a specialist private clinic, and arranged for her to meet the surgeon who would be carrying out the operation.

However, Green has now said that her surgery has been blocked after the surgeon claimed that the clinic was worried about the impact on other patients of having a murderer on the wards.

Green said that the surgeon also expressed concern about the publicity that the clinic would attract for carrying out gender reassignment in such a high-profile case.

Speaking from HMP Edinburgh, Green said that she now expected to complete her life sentence without having the operation.

Green said: “The surgeon was worried about whether other staff and patients would feel safe having me there, given my crime. He said it could also generate the kind of publicity the clinic didn’t want. I felt the hope draining out of me.

“I’d been totally focused on becoming a woman, and since I realised at 15 that I should have been a woman all along I’d never doubted I would go all the way and have the surgery, so I’m pretty devastated now.”

Green knows that few people will sympathise with her because of the appalling crime she committed.

She began to identify as female in 2011. In 2013 she and two accomplices were jailed for killing Robert Shankland, 45. He had been tied up, kicked and attacked with a rolling pin. A ligature was also tied around his neck and a plastic bag pulled over his head.

Green was approved for surgery more than two years ago, having lived as a woman and taken female hormones for several years.

A surgeon visited her in prison in March last year and she had hoped the operation would follow in August or September at the Nuffield clinic in Brighton. However, she has been left disappointed by the surgeon’s reluctance to proceed.

She said: “I’m struggling. It’s getting harder and harder. I’m not suicidal. I don’t think I could do that. But sometimes I find myself praying for death.”

She believes that her difficult early years and her confusion at being a woman in a man’s body drove her to crime. She said: “I’m not asking anyone to care about me, but I’d had a really awful childhood, and I was totally messed up. I was beaten with a belt for ridiculous things. I spent time in care, I never had any stability and because I’m dyslexic people treated me like I was stupid. I was already walking around carrying a lot of anger inside me before I realised I should have been a woman, and that made me more angry because I wondered if I’d have been a different person if I’d been a woman. I’m not going to make excuses because there are none. I regret what I did, and I’m sorry for it every day of my life.

“When I talk about not getting my operation, I don’t expect or want anyone to feel anything for me. I know what I did, so I’m not asking for sympathy.”

An prison service spokesman said: “It’s not appropriate for us to make any comments on matters involving individual prisoners.”

A Nuffield Health spokesman said: “We are unable to comment on individual patients’ cases.

“We understand and respect that some people may have complex needs or circumstances and therefore on a case-by-case basis risk assessments may be carried out prior to admission.

“The risk assessment is based on all the information provided to us, taking into consideration staff, patients and visitors that could potentially be at risk.”

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