UK News

Transgender rapist Isla Bryson to be sentenced

Isla Bryson, 31, is due to be sentenced on Tuesday (Andrew Milligan/PA)
Lucinda Cameron, PA Scotland

A transgender rapist who raped two women while still a man is due to be sentenced on Tuesday.

Isla Bryson, 31, was convicted last month of raping two women: one in Clydebank in 2016; and one in Drumchapel, Glasgow, in 2019; committing the offences while still a man known as Adam Graham.

Bryson met both the victims online, with prosecutors saying the 31-year-old “preyed” on vulnerable women.

After the jury at the High Court in Glasgow delivered its guilty verdict, judge Lord Scott told Bryson the crimes were “considerable” and said that “a significant sentence is inevitable”.

The case sparked an uproar after Bryson was initially housed in an all-female prison before being moved to the male estate following the outcry.

Scotland's Justice Secretary Keith Brown ordered an urgent review of the case and the Scottish Prison Service (SPS) took the decision to halt the movement of all transgender prisoners with a history of violence against women into the female estate.

Bryson is due to be sentenced at the High Court in Edinburgh on Tuesday.

The 31-year-old first appeared in court as Adam Graham in 2019 and was later named in court papers the following year – around the time of the decision to transition – as Isla Annie Bryson, formerly known as Adam Graham.

During the trial, the court heard that Bryson was going through the breakdown of a brief, unhappy, marriage and went to stay with the first victim at the victim's mother's house in Clydebank in 2016.

Giving evidence on pre-recorded video, the victim, 30, said she was raped for half an hour.

“All I said was ‘no' over and over and over again,” she said.

“At the time I was so scared. Sick to the stomach. I just didn't know what was going on.”

The second victim, who gave evidence via live video-link, told the court Bryson continued to have sex with her after she said stop.

The court heard Bryson entered the victim with “her penis”, and was told to stop because Bryson was “crushing” the victim.

The victim's police statement said Bryson instead told her to “stay there” because “he (Bryson) wasn't finished”.

The victim told the court: “I said to stop but he (Bryson) just kept on going, and that's when I just closed my eyes and I am doing what he wanted to do.”

Giving evidence during the trial, Bryson claimed both women consented to having sex.

Bryson spoke of identifying as transgender at the age of four but not making the decision to transition until the age of 29.

The court heard that Bryson is currently taking hormones and seeking surgery to complete gender reassignment.