Kenneth Dutch was convicted of murder in 1979 and became a life prisoner aged 16 but repeated bids to secure his release at Parole Board hearings have failed.
Dutch has raised an action at the Court of Session in Edinburgh seeking a declaration that the board's decision is a breach of his rights under the European Convention on Human Rights (ECHR). He also wants the court to tell the board to make an order for his release.
Dutch is also pursuing an action against the Scottish Government over its alleged failure to provide sufficient opportunities for his rehabilitation, including a claim for £10,000 damages.
He claims that, as a result of its failure to provide him with a real chance at rehabilitation, his continued detention is arbitrary. His case is based on a prisoner who is detained for public protection having to be given a real opportunity for rehabilitation.
He claims ministers have no power to detain him and says he has suffered "distress and frustration" at delays in his progress through the prison system.
His case is one of several due to come court following a European court decision.
Roddy Dunlop, QC, counsel for the Parole Board for Scotland, sought to have the judicial review case brought against the board dismissed as irrelevant yesterday at a hearing before Lord Burns, with the action against the Scottish Ministers to be heard later.
He told the judge that Dutch had been convicted of "a brutal murder with sexual overtones" and had been incarcerated ever since. He was later given a minimum term to serve of nine years' imprisonment under his life sentence, but the end of that period, known as a punishment part, had passed in 1988.
Mr Dunlop said: "On his own averments he has become completely institutionalised and is presently incapable of interacting appropriately with women."
The board's role was to assess whether it was no longer necessary for the protection of the public that the life prisoner should continue to be confined.
He said there was "a clear injunction" to the board in legislation "not to direct the release of a life prisoner unless it is satisfied that continued incarceration is no longer necessary for the protection of the public". He told the court: "There is no challenge to the Parole Board assessment that he is not safe for release."
Mr Dunlop said that, for the court to allow any interpretation which would permit the release of a prisoner who has been assessed as not safe for liberty, would go against the grain of legislation.
Mr Dunlop said such a move would have "important practical repercussions". He added: "The will of Parliament, I submit for reasons which could not be clearer, is that a life prisoner deemed by the Parole Board as unsafe for release will not be released."
Dutch, a prisoner in Edinburgh's Saughton jail, contends that a lack of available treatment or suitable rehabilitation has meant that his imprisonment is arbitrary and unlawful.
It was claimed that his detention was a continuing breach of his human rights and that the Scottish Government continuing to hold him in prison was incompatible with those rights.
Mr Dunlop said the Parole Board had no role in the conditions in which Dutch was held in prison.
The judge will give a decision on the Parole Board's move to have the action against it dismissed later.