Situation in preliminary prisons and improper financing of penitentiaries may bring to unpredicted deplorable consequences


Violations of the Constitutional rights of citizens and the demands of the laws concerning the material, medical and sanitary provision of convicts in preliminary prisons of the State penitentiary department of Ukraine are systematic. This depressing conclusion was made for the umpteenth time after a check conducted by the prosecutor’s office.

As a result of overcrowding of preliminary prisons, contrary to Article 11 of the Law of Ukraine «On preliminary incarceration», a significant part of convicts even do not have the places for sleep. In fact, the prisoners have to sleep by turns. From 400 to 1300 persons more than it is stipulated by norms are kept in preliminary prisons of the Crimean Republic, Dnepropetrovsk, Lugansk, Odessa, Poltava, Kharkov and Kherson oblasts.

The persons condemned to life imprisonment, whose verdicts came into effect, are kept in preliminary prisons, and this contradicts the demands of part 1 of Article 150 of the Criminal-Executive Code and the Law of Ukraine «On preliminary incarceration». In particular, this situation brought to the attempt of escape of the condemned to life imprisonment, which occurred on 5 March 2004 in preliminary prison No. 13 of Kyiv.

The improper fulfillment by law-enforcing organs of the demands of the Law of Ukraine «On struggle with TB», such as the provision of timely and thorough examination of the persons, who are kept in special establishments, promotes the fast spreading of this disease in preliminary prisons and penitentiaries.

Since 1994 the stable tendency is observed to growth of the number of tubercular patients, who get to preliminary prisons. The TB morbidity in preliminary prisons is 112 times more than the average level in the country. On 1 April 2004 as much as 11 thousand persons with the active form of TB were kept in penitentiary establishments, among them 1300 stayed in preliminary prisons. At the same time, in preliminary prisons of Kyiv, Kirovograd, Lugansk and some other oblasts the consumptives were kept together with other convicts and obtained no medical aid.

Neither the heads of penitentiary establishments nor the local power organs took the proper measures for the improvement of financing of anti-epidemic arrangements.

The representation on liquidation of the disclosed violations of laws was handed to the head of the State penitentiary department. The General Prosecutor’s office of Ukraine informed the Cabinet of Ministers of Ukraine about the results of the check with recommendations to take the mecessary measures for improvement of the situation.

Press-service of the General Prosecutor’s office of Ukraine

14 April 2004

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