A trans double rapist received more than £30,000 of taxpayers cash to mount a defence – while she was initially sent to a womens prison.
Isla Bryson, 31, was convicted in January of raping two women: one in Clydebank in 2016 and one in Drumchapel, Glasgow, in 2019.
The case sparked an uproar after Bryson was initially housed in an all-female prison before being moved to the male estate following the outcry.
She committed the offences while still a man known as Adam Graham amd was sentenced to eight years in jail.
Bryson met both the victims online, with prosecutors saying the 31-year-old ‘preyed’ on vulnerable women.
Isla Bryson, 31, pictured, was convicted in January of raping two women: one in Clydebank in 2016 and one in Drumchapel, Glasgow , in 2019
She committed the offences while still a man known as Adam Graham (pictured) and was sentenced to eight years in jail
Bryson met both victims online, with prosecutors saying the 31-year-old ‘preyed’ on vulnerable women. She began transitioning after being charged with the rapes in 2020, aged 29
Bryson still has a penis and began transitioning after being charged with the rapes in 2020, aged 29.
The sex beast’s lawyers recieved a total of £30,428.23 in fees, VAT, outlays and counsels’ fees out of a fund from the Scottish Legal Aid Board.
A spokesperson for the Scottish Legal Aid Board said: ‘Anyone charged with a serious criminal offence has the right to a fair trial and effective representation helps ensure that.
‘As well as preventing miscarriages of justice, paying lawyers to provide representation for an accused eligible for legal aid helps the trial process to run smoothly and can help reduce inconvenience and distress for victims and witnesses.’
Scotland’s Justice Secretary Keith Brown ordered an urgent review of the case and the Scottish Prison Service (SPS) took the decision to halt the movement of all transgender prisoners with a history of violence against women into the female estate.
Bryson was moved out of Scotland’s only all-women’s prison to a male jail within hours of a humiliating U-turn by ex-Scottish First Minister Nicola Sturgeon.
The SNP leader revealed the U-turn just 24 hours after her own justice secretary Keith Brown backed the Scottish Prison Service’s decision to put the transgender double rapist with female inmates in Cornton Vale.
Scottish Tory leader Douglas Ross said today: ‘It should not have taken public disgust and a slew of negative headlines about a double rapist being sent to a women’s prison for Nicola Sturgeon to realise this was completely unacceptable and wrong.’
The double rapist will serve the sentence at HMP Edinburgh, also known as Saughton Prison, which was built in 1920 and holds around 900 prisoners per day.
Isla Bryson leaves Edinburgh High Court in a prison van after being sentenced to eight years in jail
‘They are the ones who are suffering and all he’s done is pull a stroke to try and get himself a softer sentence.
The sex-attacker’s estranged wife dismissed the double rapist’s eight-year sentence as ‘nowhere near enough’.
Shonna Graham, 31, said: ‘He – and I will always call him a he – will be out of prison in four years, but his two victims will have to live with this for the rest of their lives.
‘It’s an insult to them that their whole ordeal has hardly been discussed and it’s all been about him, and what kind of prison should he go to.
‘I’m glad they finally saw sense and put him in a man’s prison and I hope he has a hard time there – he deserves it after what he’s done.’
Shonna said she thought 15 years would have been a more suitable sentence for the double rapist, but she did welcome Lord Scott’s words when he told Bryson: ‘You see yourself as the victim in this case. You are not.’
It came just weeks after the devolved Scottish Parliament passed a Bill to make it easier for people to change their legal gender, drawing criticism from women’s rights campaigners who argue predatory men could use it to access single-sex spaces such as bathrooms.
The Government in Westminster has since said it will block the change because it would have an impact on equality matters across the rest of the country.
The issue also came to a head shortly before Nicola Sturgeon said she would step down as Scottish First Minister after almost a decade in power, saying she had become too divisive.
During sentencing today, Lord Scott noted Bryson continues to ‘vehemently deny’ the offences, claiming the victims ‘colluded’ to press charges.
Shonna Graham, 31, married evil Graham when he was a man before his court case
Shonna Graham and Isla Bryson – then Adam Graham – on their wedding day
The court heard the rapist, who appeared in court wearing a blonde wig, black leggings and fluorescent pink jacket, is still pursuing full gender reassignment and is on ‘the maximum recommended doses of hormone prescription’ from Glasgow’s Sandyford sexual health service clinic.
Defence advocate Edward Targowski KC said this, coupled with ‘troubled early years’, made Bryson vulnerable.
He told the court the criminal’s move to transition following both rapes was not ‘an afterthought cynically designed to reduce the punishment’, contrary to what he described as ‘ill-informed and ill-judged comments’ made outside of the court.
But Lord Scott said the seriousness of the crimes ‘far outweigh’ Bryson’s mitigatory circumstances.
He acknowledged Bryson is considered ‘vulnerable in some ways’ due to adverse childhood experiences, but said: ‘You see yourself as the victim in this situation. You are not.
‘Your vulnerability is no excuse at all for what you did to these two women.
‘You raped two women who can both be regarded as vulnerable.’
The Scottish Legal Aid Board have been contacted for comment.