Investigation Report into Death In Custody of Paul Henderson

Published on November 24 2010

The Prisoner Ombudsman, Pauline McCabe, today made a total of five recommendations following her investigation into the death of Mr Paul Henderson, 59, in Altnagelvin Hospital while in the custody of Magilligan Prison on 26th January 2009.

Releasing her Investigation Report, Mrs McCabe said: “All deaths of prisoners in custody are investigated by my office, including those due to natural causes. It is my role to determine the circumstances and events surrounding each individual death and to make recommendations to the Prison Service or other associated organisations if these are required.”

“These investigations also provide the families concerned with an opportunity to raise any concerns they may have and to ensure that these are taken into account.”

Pauline McCabe added: “In this instance, I have put forward five recommendations to the Prison Service and the South Eastern Health and Social Trust (SEHSCT), which has responsibility for healthcare in prisons. These recommendations cover the procedures undertaken around hospital appointments and visits by prisoners to hospitals.”

Mr Henderson was diagnosed with cancer in December 2008 and died in January 2009.

Further media inquiries should be directed to David Cullen on 028 9080 2000, by mobile on 07919 598 710 or by email to

Notes to editors:

The Prisoner Ombudsman terms of reference (www. requires her office to investigate all deaths in prison custody since September 2005.
When the office was given this role no additional resources were provided.
The current Prisoner Ombudsman secured some additional resources in Summer 2009 and is currently working through a backlog of death in custody investigations.
Copies of all death in custody investigation reports published to date can be found at
It will be normal practice for copies of Death in Custody investigation reports to be placed on the website with notification to the press through a press release.
Investigations are ongoing into 5 deaths in prison custody