Belfast Telegraph

Constable Stephen Carroll murderer 'can challenge lack of access to computers for studies'

Brendan McConville who was jailed for Stephen's murder
Brendan McConville who was jailed for Stephen's murder
Lord Justice McCloskey indicated a full hearing should now take place before the end of the year (stock photo)

By Alan Erwin

A dissident republican jailed for the murder of PSNI Constable Stephen Carroll has won High Court permission to challenge an alleged denial of access to online resources for his degree studies.

Brendan McConville claims the Prison Service failed to ensure he can safely use computers to complete an Open University course in criminology and psychology.

The 48-year-old was granted leave to seek a judicial review after a judge ruled he has established an arguable case.

Lord Justice McCloskey indicated a full hearing should now take place before the end of the year.

McConville, from Craigavon, Co Armagh, is serving at least 25 years behind bars for the murder of Mr Carroll 10 years ago.

A second man, John Paul Wootton (28), from Lurgan, Co Armagh, was handed a minimum 18-year term for his part in the murder.

Constable Carroll (48) was the first PSNI officer to be murdered.

The court heard McConville is in the final stages of a Bachelor of Science honours degree in criminology and psychology studies.

Counsel for McConville said his client was in segregation at Maghaberry for safety reasons.

The lawyer argued that it was irrational for the authorities to say the convicted killer can use the facilities by simply leaving the separate regime.

According to McConville's legal team it amounted to a difference in treatment.

Belfast Telegraph

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