Murder suspect Shrien Dewani has been moved to a mental hospital after flying into uncontrollable rages and ”frightening” patients at a psychiatric unit, it has emerged.
The depressed businessman, 31, was sent to The Priory in Bristol last month while he awaits an extradition hearing over the murder of his wife Anni, 28, in South Africa.
But he has become prone to violent outbursts and is now ”completely unmanageable”, according to staff.
He walked out of the unit last weekend after hurling a plate at the door of a patient who asked him a question about the case.
Care home tycoon Dewani was then arrested for breaching his bail conditions and hauled into Bristol Magistrates Court on Monday.
The court heard he was ”no longer welcome” at The Priory and prosecutors applied for him to remanded in custody.
But JPs rejected the application and transferred him to a more secure mental health hospital after hearing details of his worrying meltdown.
Jeremy Oliver, prosecuting, said: ”His deteriorating mental state appears to be that he represents a threat to other people in the Priory and is no longer welcome.
”He appears to be of an unstable nature and the prosecution’s concern is that if he is released on bail he would commit further offences of violence.”
The Priory is a private clinic which specialises in ”mild to moderate mental health issues, such as stress and anxiety”.
A statement by a mental health worker detailed how Dewani threw a plate at another patient’s door after he had dared to ask him why he was not in South Africa.
It also claimed he had chucked a cushion at a nurse.
The court heard that the other patients at the Priory, in Stapleton, Bristol, had made a collective complaint against him – because they were ”frightened”.
Nurse Miriam Andrews said: ”Other patients at the Priory are frightened of him.
”They have told me, in person, they are intimidated.”
The Priory in Bristol
Dr Paul Dedman, the Priory’s consultant psychiatrist, claimed Dewani’s violent outbursts could be a result of the ”complex” medication he was taking.
He wrote: ”Mr Dewan’s medical needs are complex and he has suffered from what is likely to have been an adverse reaction to the combination of medication which he has been on.”
Julian Knowles QC, representing Dewani, said it was vital he continued hospital care for post traumatic stress disorder and severe mental illness.
Denouncing prosection claims he may fail to appear at future hearings or commit further offences, he said: ”Mr Dewani is extremely seriously ill and simply doesn’t have the mental facilities to disappear.
”He has become one of the most famous faces of 2011.
”He’s become very agitated and very distressed. The risk of further offences at the hospital, given the care that it can provide, is so low.”
Mr Dewani’s wife Anni, 28, was murdered after the taxi they were in was car-jacked last November.
The driver, Zola Tongo, admitted being involved but claimed Mr Dewani paid him £1,400.
Mr Knowles told the court on Monday: ”It’s the word of one person who has everything to gain that has caused Mr Dewani’s mental health to collapse.”
District Judge Simon Cooper rejected a custody application from the prosecution and sent him to the Cygnet Hospital, near Weston-super-Mare, Somerset for treatment.
The secure facility is described as ”a tranquil and therapeutic environment to provide care and treatment for those individuals with complex mental illness”.
He said: ”It’s quite obvious to me that Mr Dewani requires proper medical treatment in order to improve his mental state, to reduce the risk of suicide and to improve, if possible, his ability to assist his legal team in extradition proceedings.”
A source close to the Dewani family said yesterday: ”The family is pleased Shrien will be getting the treatment he needs and is pleased the district judge upheld his right to bail in spite of further attempts by the South African government to revoke it.”