May 19 2013 Latest news:
Tuesday, March 20, 2012
Three prison officers are suing the Ministry of Justice for stress-related injuries they claim they suffered when a dangerous inmate escaped from a police van while under their escot.
Robert Burn, Ann Shalloe and Wayne De Man were escorting Joe Farnan in an ambulance from Wormwood Scrubs in west London to Hammersmith Hospital, in January 2007, when the door was opened and they were confronted by two men wearing balaclavas - one of whom threatened them with a pistol and demanded Farnan’s release.
The three officers allege that their injuries were caused by a breach of duty or negligence on the part of the Ministry of Justice, which denies liability.
They claim Farnan’s ‘C’ categorisation should have been upgraded to ‘B’ following two previous escapes and a further two attempts by him.
He was a “dangerous” man, Craig Sephton QC told Mr Justice Mackay in London.
Mr Burn, 47, who is claiming up to £15,000 damages, says that his moderate post traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) has left him unable to participate in hospital escorts.
Ms Shalloe, 44, says that she believed her life - and that of her colleagues - was in extreme peril.
She went on to develop both depressive illness and PTSD and had been unfit for any employment since May 2010.
Mr De Man, 47, alleges that the incident caused severe symptoms which led to his retirement on the grounds of ill-health in February 2010, and is seeking up to £50,000 damages.
Farnan whose convictions included armed robbery and, in July 2006, received an indeterminate sentence for the protection of the public with a minimum term of five years, was later recaptured.