Albert Haines, convicted in 1986 of attempted wounding, loses battle at public hearing to be freed from Broadmoor The first psychiatric patient to have an appeal against detention heard in public lost his legal battle to be freed from Broadmoor hospital on Wednesday. Albert Haines, 52, made legal history when he successfully argued that his case should be considered at an open hearing. But a mental health tribunal ruled that the degree of his mental disorder meant he should not be released from the high-security psychiatric institution. Haines was convicted of two counts of attempted wounding in September 1986 after he armed himself with a machete and a knife and tried to attack a doctor and a nurse at the Maudsley psychiatric hospital in Camberwell, south London. Since then he has been detained under the Mental Health Act at Broadmoor in Crowthorne, Berkshire, and at Three Bridges medium secure unit in Ealing, west London. The tribunal heard that he does not think there is anything wrong with him and believes his discharge from Broadmoor is "in the moral public interest". But it also received evidence from Dr Jose Romero-Urcelay, Haines's responsible clinician, who argued that the patient remained a risk to the public and to himself. The mental health tribunal panel's ruling, the first ever to be published, criticised Broadmoor for repeatedly moving Haines between wards this year, which it described as destabilising and "extremely unhelpful". The panel concluded: "Plainly these tribunal proceedings, being greatly extended by the issue of whether the hearing should be in public, have dominated Mr Haines's life in the last two years or so, really to the exclusion of everything else. "It is in nobody's interest that Mr Haines should have to be detained, whether in high or medium security, for a day longer than absolutely necessary. "In our judgment detention does remain necessary, and we conclude by observing that it is likely to remain so unless the treating team are able to find a way of engaging Mr Haines, and that this will require an equal commitment by Mr Haines himself." An estimated 100,000 mental health tribunals have been held in the past seven years, but out of these there were only 10 applications for the hearing to be held in public. Only one previous application for an open session was granted, and this was later withdrawn. Broadmoor is home to some of Britain's most dangerous criminals, including the Yorkshire Ripper, Peter Sutcliffe, and serial killer Robert Napper. Crime Mental health Health © 2011 Guardian News and Media Limited or its affiliated companies. All rights reserved. | Use of this content is subject to our Terms & Conditions | More Feeds

0 comments… add one

Leave a Comment

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Skip to toolbar