5 Sep 2013

Authorities failed Castro - lawyer

11:30 pm on 5 September 2013

The lawyer for Ariel Castro, the man who kidnapped three women and held them as sex slaves for nearly a decade, has criticised the prison service for failing to look after his client.

Castro, 53, was found hanging in his cell, a month after starting his life sentence.

He was checked every thirty minutes but was not under constant observation.

His lawyer Craig Weintraub says the authorities could have done more to protect him. "There's still an obligation to prevent our inmates from committing suicide."

During his trial, Castro was taken off suicide watch after authorities determined he was not at risk of taking his own life.

Castro's defence lawyers say officials denied Castro permission to receive mental health counselling, even though he had contemplated suicide in 2004 and was likely to suffer depression after being sentenced.