Report: Inmates Control 65% of Mexico's Prisons

According to review of 101 most populated prisons
By Matt Cantor,  Newser Staff
Posted Nov 20, 2013 12:48 PM CST
Report: Inmates Control 65% of Mexico's Prisons
Mexican army soldiers guard an entrance to the prison in the city of Piedras Negras, Mexico.   (AP Photo/Adriana Alvarado)

Mexico's prisons are in "critical condition," says an official, and a new report seems to confirm it: Sixty-five of Mexico's 101 most populous prisons were controlled by the inmates themselves last year, according to the National Human Rights Commission; that's up 4.3% from 2011. What's more, 52 of those institutions are overcrowded. Violence—including fights, riots, and murders—has also increased.

Among last year's numbers: 154 dead inmates, another 103 wounded, and 261 who escaped. One of the most stunning figures, per the AFP: 49. That's the number of prisons in which inmates maintain "privileged areas" where banned substances are kept and prostitution occurs. (More inmates stories.)

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