More than 70 Dutch-speaking prison wardens have written an open letter denouncing prison overcrowding. Oudenaarde Prison warden Hans Krauss says pretrial detention is too long (awaiting verdict). Vincent Van Quickenborne Justice Minister (Open VLD) wants to enter into talks.

In March, “Terzak” filmed the dire conditions in Ghent’s prison, where hundreds of people were either huddled together in two or three cells with rooms for one, or sleeping on the floor. . The problem has been going on for decades. The numbers from the beginning of the year aren’t lying either. Belgian prisons hold 11,076 people, but only 9,500.

Prison wardens find it unacceptable to be “forced to commit human rights abuses” every day. They are now primarily calling for legal limits on pretrial detention. Because, they say, there is a problem. “About 40% of the prison population has not been convicted but is awaiting trial. increase.

Minister Van Quikkenborn has expressed his understanding and would like to consult with the Public Prosecutor’s Office and the Courts regarding lengthy pre-trial detention in our country. “In the past, people were released early until a trial was held, but now they are being held more and more locked up, so the question we ask is, are the standards being applied correctly? ‘, the minister said in ‘De Morgen’ (Radio 1). “We are actively discussing this with magistrates and others.”

Van Quickenborne also lists standards for pretrial detention. Detention is necessary for public safety, must appear to be at risk of escape or reoffending, and evidence will disappear.

Source: vrt

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