Estranged wife of trans rapist Isla Bryson 'delighted' Nicola Sturgeon has quit after gender reform plans

15 February 2023, 15:51

Isla Bryson's case emerged days after Ms Sturgeon promoted her gender recognition reforms
Isla Bryson's case emerged days after Ms Sturgeon promoted her gender recognition reforms. Picture: Alamy

By Will Taylor

The estranged wife of transgender double rapist Isla Bryson is "delighted" at Nicola Sturgeon's resignation.

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The criminal was initially housed in a women's prison despite her having male genitalia.

That came days after Ms Sturgeon pushed through her controversial forms that would make it easier to have a person to change their officially recognised gender.

Attempts to amend the law - which was blocked by Westminster and led to a legal battle - so that it would be harder for sex offenders to change their gender were stopped by Ms Sturgeon.

Read more: 'In my head and my heart I know it's time to go': Sturgeon quits as First Minister of Scotland in shock resignation

But an outcry broke out after Ms Bryson was put in a women's facility after being convicted of rape.

"She shot herself in the foot over and over again, and I'm delighted she's gone," Shonna Graham, the 31-year-old estranged wife of Bryson, said.

Bryson said she identified as a woman after being accused of rape.

Bryson's wife hit out at Ms Sturgeon
Bryson's wife hit out at Ms Sturgeon. Picture: Alamy

Ms Graham, from Motherwell, told MailOnline: "I'm all in favour of transgender rights, but this policy went too far and ended up putting a rapist, who still had all his bits, in a woman's prison."

Bryson was later transferred to a male prison but Ms Sturgeon stuck to her guns on her reforms, despite trying to dance around the issue of Bryson's identity. She said she preferred to call the "individual" as a "rapist".

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Ms Graham, a previous SNP voter who is re-evaluating where to send her political support, said: "It was only a matter of time – people, even a lot of those who voted SNP – could see this policy was nuts, and Adam only changed sex to get an easier time in prison.

"But more generally, surely anyone can see that if a convicted rapist still has his sexual organs intact, he should never be sent to a woman's prison. He did the crime as a man, he should do the time as a man in a big boy's jail.

"The whole policy has been nothing but a disaster and this case showed exactly why. It all went too far."

Nicola Sturgeon is quitting as first minister
Nicola Sturgeon is quitting as first minister. Picture: Alamy

She again said Bryson was trying to cheat the authorities by claiming a gender change.

Ms Sturgeon refused to say the trans row was behind her resignation as First Minister, which came as a surprise on Wednesday morning.

"This decision is not a reaction to short term pressures," she insisted, saying instead that politicians needed to recognise when the time comes to step aside.

She had been shaping up to fight the next general election as a de facto independence referendum, but some nationalists accused her of eroding support for the cause by tying herself so closely to the gender recognition reforms.

Her predecessor as first minister, Alex Salmond, accused her of getting wrapped up in "some daft ideology imported from elsewhere".