Detainee P

Name: Detainee P
Nationality: Algerian
Residence: Britain
Marital Status: Single
Date of Arrest: 20/12/2001
Location of Arrest: UK
Release on Bail: 11/03/2005
Date of Re-Arrest: 11/08/2005

Write to him : Detainee P
HMP Long Lartin
South Littleton
WR11 8TZ

Detainee ‘P’ is in his thirties, and from Algeria. He arrived in Britain on 18 February 1999 as a refugee, but was refused Asylum. He has no family.

He has lost one forearm, and the other arm is amputated above the elbow.

‘P’ was charged with terrorist offences in 2001. They were dropped but he is still accused of being an associate of Algerian terror groups. He was detained in Belmarsh Prison.

‘P’, along with ‘A’ and Abu Rideh, were granted bail in January 2005. The Home Office said he should be put under house arrest but his lawyers objected. They said he would be prepared to live at a named address, be tagged, live by a curfew and accept other restrictions, but could not accept house arrest.

On Friday 11th March, ‘P’ was freed on bail, after 3 years of detainment without trial. The release of detainee P and others follow a ruling by the law lords in December that the government’s emergency powers being used to hold the men without trial were illegal.

During his detention, ‘P’ became a close friend of another Detainee at Belmarsh Prison, detainee ‘B’. ‘B’ became his carer and cellmate, and helped him with the most basic of tasks, such as dressing, eating and washing.

The lawyer for ‘P’, Gareth Peirce, stated ‘P’ was effectively helpless when he was jailed, and had no false arms or disability aids.

« He had had prosthetic arms but had been arrested two years earlier, and the police had broken those arms. They’d actually caused wholesale damage. With that whole experience, he has never been able to bring himself to try them again ».

Both detainees became so mentally disturbed by their isolation and detention without trial, they were in a « life-threatening condition ». In October and November, the two men were sectioned under the Mental Health Act, and sent separately to Broadmoor High Security Hospital for specialist psychiatric care.

Gareth Peirce stated that Broadmoor has said that it is wholly unsuitable for detainees under the 2001 Act, and that they do not fit the criteria for placement there. However, in each case, the Home Secretary has overridden that professional psychiatric advice and placed them there.

Both detainee ‘P’ and ‘B’ were single men, and had been particularly isolated. They have had no visitors whatsoever during their time of detention.

‘P’ was eventually released from Broadmoor hospital on 11th March.

He appeared before Mr Justice Ouseley at the special immigration appeals commission in central London to hear the conditions under which he was finally being released.

In the terror control order chaos that followed his eventual release, ‘P’ was left without food and contact with the outside world. A spokesman for Birnberg Peirce and partners, the law firm representing most of the men, said that police had to break down his door to let him into to his new home.

« He is suppose to use a fixed telephone to call the monitoring company every time he leaves or enters his house. But he has no arms and no-one seems to have thought about adapting the phone to his special needs, » said the spokesman.

Under the controversial bail conditions, ‘P’ must wear an electronic tag. He must live at his home address, and observe a curfew between 7pm and 7am. He will not be allowed to meet anyone by prior arrangement outside his home without Home Office permission. Police and other officials will be able to carry out searches in his home.

‘P’ will only be allowed one fixed telephone line. Mobile phones and computers which can access the Internet are not permitted in his home. ‘P’ must notify the Home Office if he intends to leave the country.

Additonally, he will be limited to one bank account and barred from transferring money without the Home Office’s consent.