After moving from HM Prison Wakefield to HM Prison Long Lartin last week so that he can be closer to his seriously ill mother following a recent kidney transplant, child sex offender and former Lostprophets vocalist Ian Watkins is warned to be in serious danger with fellow inmates.
Former Long Lartin inmate Michael O’Brien, who spent seven years in Category A Long Lartin during his 11 years inside after being wrongly convicted of murder, said that the other prisoners would not like Watkins‘ presence.
Even if the disgraced frontman is segregated, he will still meet his family with other prisoners when they get to meet their partners and children at visiting times.
“There could be other kids in that room and that would be a big concern,” said O’Brien. “Other inmates will object if their kids are in there, I can’t see them being happy with that. Someone there will want to try to make a name for himself. They will try to kill him. Even prisoners have some morals. If you mess with kids that is it.”
O’Brien said that Watkins would have been much safer staying at HM Prison Wakefield in West Yorkshire. In 1995, sex offender Chris Smith was found murdered in his cell at HM Prison Long Lartin with fatal head injuries.
“There is a real danger to his life,” Michael said. “Someone there will want to try and make a name for himself. They will try and kill him. He might be washing his face in the bathroom area and someone could come behind him and attack him. Or two or three of them might wait for him to go in the shower and attack him there.”
A Prison Service insider insisted visits would be monitored by CCTV. If anything happened guards would be ready to pounce and the visit would be ended, said the source. They also added, “The room will be fully monitored by officers, it will be really tight.”
Watkins was sentenced at Cardiff Crown Court last month for 29 years, with six on licence, but is currently appealing against the length of that sentence. He confessed to 13 offences, including two counts of attempted baby rape. He was described as a “determined and committed paedophile” by a judge.