In Romania, recidivism has decreased, but the penitentiaries are an old system problem, Justice Minister Tudorel Toader said on Sunday.
“In Romania, recidivism has fallen from 46% below 40%. Recidivism did not increase since the compensatory appeal, for recidivism is in fact decreasing. There are such recidivists who have come under the rule of the law and are also recidivists who benefited from the compensatory appeal, so we shouldn’t link the current state of recidivism with the compensatory appeal,” Toader said at the Parliament Palace.
According to him, the compensatory appeal is not a purely Romanian invention.
“It was the consequence of the implementation of the pilot judgment of the ECHR, where the European Court demands that in any mandatory court judgment we rule physical compensation – the six days deemed to have been executed for 30 or compensatory appeals in cash, for those who do not benefit from days considered as being executed. That’s why, the law 169, the draft law that we will initiate for the compensatory appeal, the cash compensation for the days spent in improper detention conditions in the penitentiaries, expresses nothing more than the implementation of a paragraph, of a provision in the ECHR pilot judgment. We went to the European Court of Justice and presented to the President and the Registry Board the memorandum package and the roadmap. You know that on January 26, when the judicial year started, I was invited to attend the opening, but I couldn’t go because I was at the JHA in Sofia. The President of the European Court made reference to our visit, voiced hope that we will implement these measures to solve the problem of inappropriate imprisonment in penitentiaries,” the Minister of Justice explained.
He added that there should be no “illusion” that a penitentiary is being built in half a year. “The last penitentiary in Romania was built 15 years ago. Only the documentation needs half a year to complete (…) We have pavilions in the penitentiaries which we will extend, of 200 seats and 60 seats and 600 seats – which is very much. We have two prisons, one in Berceni, in Prahova, where the feasibility study is ready, and we have a penitentiary in Unguriu, in Buzau, where the technical documentation is being completed and in the next days there will be held the tender for the feasibility study (…) The ECHR did not ask us to solve this in six months, that would have been unrealistic, the ECHR asked us that in six months, after the three months needed for the decision to be considered final, to come up with a set of measures, a roadmap, a memorandum, to show what it is to do on short term and medium terms, so as to solve the problem in penitentiaries. We have adopted the memorandum in the Government, presented it,” said Toader.
Asked if he would redefine the abuse, Tudorel Toader replied: “Any change to the law involves a redefinition of the normative content.” You cannot make a paragraph, an article, a paragraph, without redefining it. This is what amendment means.
ANP: 4,458 people have been released due to the compensatory remedy. The weight of those who relapsed is below the 1% threshold
The National Administration of the Penitentiaries (ANP) announced on Monday that 4,458 people have benefited from the Compensatory Remedy Law, and the weight of those who relapsed is below the 1% threshold. The representatives of the institution say that the number of the recidivists has decreased in the last five years, and their weight in the penitentiaries was of 38.37% in 2017.
ANP made clarifications on Monday, “in the context of the information circulated in the public space, related to the incidence of the recidivism among the imprisoned people from the Romanian penitentiary system”.
“The weight of the recidivists among the overall imprisoned population records a downward trend; in 2017, the weight of the recidivists was 38.37%, compared to 2012, when the weight of the recidivists was 45.78%” stated the ANP representatives.
According to them, since the Compensatory Remedy Law has entered into force, 1,031 people have been released from the units under the ANP subordination, as a result of the expiration of the penalty term, by granting them the benefits of the compensatory remedy provided by the Law no.169/2017, while conditional release was approved by the courts for 3,427 people.
According to ANP, “the weight of those who relapsed is below the 1% threshold”, of the total number of 4,458 people who benefited from the compensatory measures.