A convicted prisoner in Maghaberry is taking legal action against prison authorities, alleging “inhuman and degrading” treatment in breach of human rights standards.
The legal case against the justice department is understood to be the first of its kind taken by an inmate not housed in the dissident republican wing.
Richard Gilmore of KRW Law in Belfast is representing the prisoner who is also alleging sexual assault.
Mr Gilmore said the action follows the publication of a highly critical inspection report by Her Majesty’s Inspector of Prisons.
“No matter what the offence, every prisoner has rights and we consider that the prison should be held responsible because it is the prison with the DOJ that manages staffing levels in the prison and, had they been adequate, this attack, I firmly believe could have been avoided,” he added.