Axe-murderer Marcus Rappel transferred to notorious Goulburn prison
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Axe-murderer Marcus Rappel transferred to notorious Goulburn prison

Axe-murderer Marcus Rappel has been transferred to NSW's notorious Goulburn prison after a knife-fight with a another inmate.

Rappel is serving 32 years in jail after murdering his ex-partner Tara Costigan while she was holding their newborn baby.

Goulburn Correctional Centre.

Goulburn Correctional Centre.

Photo: Janie Barrett

The Canberra Times understands Rappel's involvement in a number of violent incidents at Canberra prison forced ACT authorities to move him interstate.

The unrepentant killer - who had to be removed from his own sentence after yelling at the judge - was in protection as recently as May 2018 after he was bashed in his cell in the AMC on April 19 this year.

It is understood he was involved in a knife fight with another Canberra detainee, Damien Featherstone, several months ago. Mr Featherstone is a member of the notoriously violent Brothers 4 Life gang.

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Meanwhile, Rappel is to face trial on September 24 for his role in an alleged prison bashing.

Marcus Rappel, who is serving 32 years for the murder of his estranged partner Tara Costigan.

Marcus Rappel, who is serving 32 years for the murder of his estranged partner Tara Costigan.

Photo: Supplied

He is accused of being part of a gang, including men with links to the Comanchero, that bashed the two men in their cells in the Canberra prison on August 7 last year. Both alleged victims were taken to hospital.

Rappel is being housed in Goulburn's SuperMax prison, the Canberra Times understands.

He is one of only two Canberra prisoners sent to Goulburn. The first was an ACT prison guard accused of raping his ex-partner in allegations that later found to be deeply flawed.

Goulburn's SuperMax prison is home to Australia's most dangerous and high-risk prisoners including more than 30 convicted terrorists.

Child molester Robert Hughes, Sydney rape gang leader Bilal Skaf, serial killer Ivan Milat, and murderer and former fugitive Malcolm Naden all call the prison home.

Since 2009, two Canberra prisoners have been transferred to interstate prisons, a Justice and Community Safety Directorate spokeswoman said in response to questions last week.

She said ACT Corrective Services did not disclose the personal circumstances of individual detainees.

"It is the responsibility of ACT Corrective Services (ACTCS) to ensure that all detainees are managed and supported in a safe and secure environment. To maintain this responsibility, ACTCS has the legislative ability to transfer detainees into the custody of other jurisdictions.

"Since the Alexander Maconochie Centre opened in 2009, two prisoners have been transferred to interstate prisons. In these cases, the detainee has remained an ACT prisoner in the custody of the receiving jurisdiction, with the requirements of their sentence remaining under ACT law."

A statement from NSW Corrective Services said: "We can confirm the offender is in NSW custody. We cannot comment on individual cases due to privacy reasons."

Alexandra Back is a reporter with The Canberra Times

Michael Inman is a courts reporter for The Canberra Times