By 3 News online staff
A convicted murderer who claimed he was affiliated with the Mongrel Mob has reportedly been hospitalised in an alleged assault at Auckland Prison.
Christchurch man Nikki Roper, who is serving a life sentence for strangling his ex-girlfriend, received serious head injuries and a suspected broken arm in an alleged beating yesterday, Fairfax Media reports.
He was reportedly attacked by two other prisoners connected to the Mongrel Mob, and has been hospitalised in a critical condition.
Corrections northern regional commissioner Jeanette Burns confirmed an unnamed prisoner was hospitalised following a suspected assault.
The matter has been referred to police and no update is available on the prisoner's status.
"Corrections manages some of New Zealand's most difficult and challenging citizens, violence is always a risk as many offenders resort to violent behaviour as a means of resolving issues and of expressing themselves," Ms Burns said in a statement. "Prisoners can be volatile and unpredictable and many have long histories of antisocial behaviour."
Roper was found guilty of murdering his ex-girlfriend Alexis Tovizi in 2013.
Crown lawyers accused Roper of putting his victim in a sleeper hold before stealing her car, laptop and using her Eftpos card on several occasions. The killer had previously told an inmate he was planning to kill Ms Tovizi as he believed she was cheating on him.
Defence lawyers argued she died from a seizure brought on by chronic alcohol misuse and Roper went on to appeal his conviction and sentence, but lost on every point he raised.