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Last Updated: Thursday, 29 July, 2004, 11:30 GMT 12:30 UK
Drugs prisoner walks out 'in fear'
Paul Parry, photo courtesy of the Western Mail
His family say Paul Parry had made great progress in kicking drugs while in prison
A prisoner who absconded over claims of intimidation and walked more than 60 miles to another jail, is facing a disciplinary panel.

Convicted drug dealer Paul Parry, 33, from Aberystwyth, demanded admission to Swansea prison after walking out of Prescoed open prison in Monmouthshire.

His mother Pauline claims her son was intimidated by fellow inmates who demanded he bring in drugs.

The prison and the Home Office would not comment on the details of his case.

We're now concerned that Paul will be penalised for absconding when he had no other option
Pauline Parry

Last year Parry was jailed for five-and-a-half years for being the ring-leader of a drug gang dealing heroin in Aberystwyth.

However, following an intensive drug a rehabilitation course at Swansea prison he kicked his habit.

He was moved to Parc prison at Bridgend and then Prescoed.

His mother said he was badly beaten and had no other option but to flee.

He faces a disciplinary panel at the prison on Friday.

Mrs Parry said: "Paul's made good progress following the excellent work done by Swansea prison's drug-free wing.

"But we're now concerned that Paul will be penalised for absconding when he had no other option.

"We understand that a few days could be added to Paul's sentence when he was due for parole in April.

Attack

"We haven't seen Paul since this happened two weeks ago, but he told us he'd been intimidated, threatened and beaten up by fellow inmates.

"They'd asked him to bring in drugs and when he didn't was attacked," said Mrs Parry.

"He asked the officers at Prescoed to protect him but they asked him who was responsible for the attack.

"He wouldn't tell them. The officers did offer to place him in the sex offenders wing, but he didn't want that.

"He had no option but to leave and I understand it took him about a day to get to Swansea."

When Parry arrived in the city he contacted the crime reduction charity Nacro, which urged him to return to prison.

Mrs Parry added: "The help Paul received from Swansea prison was great and then he went on drug courses in Bridgend.

Swansea Prison
Parry is currently behind bars at Swansea Prison after absconding

"The officers in Prescoed are lovely too and they do good work.

"He's had tests to prove he's kicked drugs and he's now a category D prisoner which is low priority.

"Drugs have ruined part of his life and ours and it's a real shame this has happened because he was making good progress."

Parry, who is currently being held in Swansea, was the first prison inmate in Britain to be presented with a Royal Humane Society award while still serving his sentence.

He and his father David, saved the life of a teenage girl being swept out to sea in January 2002.

Alwyn Humphries, Nacro Cymru's resettlement manager in Swansea, said: "We're aware of Paul's predicament and his circumstances.

"When we'd discovered he'd absconded we urged him to return to jail and give himself up to prison officers in Swansea."

Prescoed prison refused to comment about Parry's case.

A Home Office spokesman confirmed someone had absconded from Prescoed two weeks ago, but would not comment about individual prisoners.




SEE ALSO:
Drug dealer's bravery award
06 Aug 03  |  Mid Wales
Busker's lifesaving award
08 Aug 03  |  Mid Wales
Fury over heroin dealer award
18 Aug 03  |  Wales
Appeal over heroin girl's death
20 May 03  |  Hereford/Worcs


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