7.45pm – Robert has just rung again to say THANK YOU to all those who have written to him, it appears he’s had quite a number more letters today which he has just had access to. What happens is that the post arrives in the morning, gets screened during the day and the prisoners then receive it early evening (so he received the first 3 yesterday evening). Anyway he said he was very moved by the letters and what people have said(and thanks for the stamps and other bits and pieces too!) so wanted to get straight on the phone to thank everybody. He also said the staff and other inmates are being more than usually kind to him – of course they all know by now exactly why he’s there. I take it as very significant that they are unanimously supportive. As he puts it, “they can’t do enough for me”. If he has to be in prison (and he repeats, he saw no other way of moving things forward), really it is as pleasant as it could be under the circumstances, so no one need have any worries.
Bright start to my day with a call from Robert, only 1 minute 20 seconds? allowed but we crammed a lot in! He’s felt a bit cut off which is no one’s fault, I told him about the difficulties we’d been having in trying to get confirmation from the prison staff he was actually there and to ascertain his number! Yes, he said, he’d been approached by the Deputy Governor to ask if there was anything he, Mr Green could do about the stream of phone-calls the prison staff had been getting. He found that rather comical!
All is now well, contact is now restored and he’s already had 3 letters this morning! for which he warmly thanks those who sent them.
Far from his being ‘out of sight out of mind’, I told him there’s been a veritable storm of interest, the internet is abuzz, the daily hits on the website are going into the thousands, etc. Locking him up seems to be giving the campaign just the shot-in the-arm it needs! He said that was why he had done what he did, in order to bring the matter to public attention as fast as possible, as after 10 years of Hollie and Anne’s efforts and a few others too, still nothing whatsoever was being done about those appalling crimes. And in actually naming those names he had already made it much more difficult for those people to continue with their activities since they knew others would now be watching them. He felt confident that children in the Aberdeen area had already been safer in the past two years because of his actions. And if those people were innocent, (which he doubted having heard what Hollie has had to say about them), they should blame Grampian police for failing to investigate and clear their names right at the start, then none of this would have happened!
He reminded me (as I omitted to write in my Summary Justice blog) that after Sheriff Bowen had delivered that tirade from the bench prior to sentencing him he’d asked to say something in reply but had not been allowed to – “no Mr Green, you have had your say”. He had wanted to raise strong objection to the Sheriff’s observation that he as an English/Welshman had no business meddling in the affairs of Scotland and trying to tell the Scottish people how to run their justice-system. Well firstly that was a racist remark on the Sheriff’s part and secondly, there was every reason for every person in these islands to be extremely concerned about the Scottish justice system which was plainly not working and at that point he would have said one word back to the judge “Cadder” http://www.dailyrecord.co.uk/news/scottish-news/2011/12/05/cadder-case-legal-ruling-results-in-over-1000-court-cases-being-binned-86908-23611632/
A lady solicitor from Patrick Campbell’s office (not the one in court on 17th) is handling his appeal and will be visiting him on Thursday.
As for Craiginches Prison, it isn’t too bad, quite old-fashioned of course but the staff are reasonable and his fellow-inmates are also a pretty decent lot and yes, thank you, I am getting exercise (I’d been worried about that as I know Robert who’s a very active man and loves walking had suffered acutely the last time he was locked up on 14 April 2010 – for 23+ out of the 24 hours he’d been confined to his cell and only allowed out to go to the toilet!). The regime is quite strict regarding visitors, he is allowed only 6 per month and of course priority has to go to his family but as regards friends and supporters the best way to go about it is for us to apply to the prison to be put on the list and allocated a visit. You will need to give them your full name and address/telephone number and a choice of dates then they will get back to you to confirm when you can be slotted in.
As for things he needs in prison, he’s OK for toiletries etc. but yes, he would appreciate the odd book, his favourite categories as regards reading matter is political, travel or sport, he’s not so keen on fiction, real life is much more interesting! And yes if people can keep him supplied with stamps and paper/envelopes (and the odd bit of cash, he didn’t ask for that as such but I know he needs that to phone out and buy bits and pieces in the prison shop).
It was wonderful to hear him sounding exactly his usual cheerful self and it has made my day! He sends everyone his very best wishes.