Date lodged: 5 July 2018
To ask the Scottish Government, in light of some families reportedly waiting over four years for official confirmation of the cause of the death, what assistance it is giving to family members affected by failures to complete fatal accident inquires for inmates dying in prison.
Answered by: James Wolffe QC 30 July 2018
In respect of every individual whose death is reported to the Crown Office and Procurator Fiscal Service, following a death in prison custody, a medical certificate of cause of death is issued by a medical professional, normally by a pathologist, following a post mortem examination instructed by the Procurator Fiscal. This information is communicated to the nearest relatives in accordance with the Family Liaison Charter which I laid before the Scottish Parliament in September 2016. In addition, in relation to all FAIs nearest relatives are kept advised of significant developments as the investigation proceeds towards an FAI.