Convicted killer Mark Nash has lost his High Court bid to be returned from the Midlands Prison to Arbour Hill Prison, Dublin, where he has spent the past 15 years.
High Court President, Mr Justice Nicholas Kearns, in dismissing his legal challenge yesterday, said nothing had been put before the court that suggested Nash’s life and safety was in any imminent danger from other prisoners. He said courts should only intervene in the gravest of cases.
Nash (inset) sought the transfer on the basis he was under threat from other prisoners and had become significantly suicidal. He has already served a 15-year life sentence in Dublin’s Arbour Hill for the 1997 murder of two people in Ballintober, Co Roscommon.
Last April, Nash (42) was given another life sentence after he was found guilty of the separate murders in 1997 of Sylvia Sheils (59) and Mary Callanan (61) at their sheltered housing in Grangegorman in Dublin. That sentence runs from April last.
Following that sentence he was taken to Mountjoy Prison, where he claims he has been under threat from other prisoners and under 23-hour lock up for his safety.
He sought a return to Arbour Hill, where he claims he had been living a peaceful life, but was later transferred to the Midlands Prison where he is also under threat.
As well as being suicidal the court heard Nash refused to take food for several weeks, which resulted in him having been taken to hospital. He had started taking food again and was back at the Midlands Prison.
Judge Kearns said prisoners could not expect or demand arrangements for where they serve their sentences and that
it was not appropriate for courts to adopt a role of micro-managing criminal detention arrangements.
The judge added that the court’s decision did not preclude him from seeking a transfer to Arbour Hill in the future,
He adjourning the proceedings until October.