- Politics and Social Issues
Top 10 Deadliest Prisons in the World
The best thing about these prisons? You're not in them. Worst part? You could be...
La Sante Prison France
Either French crooks are soft or La Sante - which roughly translates as "health" in French - is a truly scary and mentally disintegrating place. More than 100 prisoners commit suicide each year. A former prison doctor wrote she was left horrified at how deranged some inmates were, and stunned when others attempted to kill themselves by swallowing rat poison, forks and drain cleaner. Prisoners would stuff clothes into the cracks of their cells to keep rats out while systematic rape was common.
Al-Ha'ir Prison Saudi Arabia
Home to some of the Middle East's worst, this place could break anyone. One prisoner detailed his padded cell with fluoro lights beaming down 24/7 and no contact with the outside world. Conditions are so bad inmates still protest, even if it means their death. In 2002, a fire lit by inmates killed 140 of their own and 40 guards. Death from torture is common.
Tadmor Military Prison Syria
Syrian poet Faraj Bayraqdar only spent five years at Tadmor, but that was enough for him to call it "the kingdom of death and madness." That's flattering says Human Rights Watch, which details "extreme brutal abuses" since the early 1980s, with everything nasty from "deaths under torture to summary executions on a massive scale". Guards are so unhinged that inmates have reportedly been cut up with axes, tied up with rope and dragged around to death, or simply been beaten with metal pipes.
Black Beach Equatorial Guinea
Amnesty International says being locked up in this prison in Malabo is "a slow, lingering death sentence." Starvation is a regular cause of death, so poor are the rations, while torture is especially brutal and includes old fashioned beating on the soles of feet and burning. Medical care is denied as rats wander freely, and human waste overflows from buckets in the cells and corridors.
La Sabaneta Prison Venezuela
Over-crowded and corrupt, prison staff struggle to maintain any control here. Rich inmates rule the roost but even they can't escape the disease - cholera once wiped out 700 inmates. With no activities allowed, violence is more a means of communication than a worst-case scenario. In 1994, 100 inmates were massacred, and prisoners use weapons made from whatever they can lay their hands on to kill you with.
Petak Island Prison Russia
This is Russia's Alcatraz, built on an island to house the worst of the worst - criminals who would be dead if Russia still had the death penalty. Even the prison psychologist, Sventlana Kiselyova, says its conditions lead inmates to be "psychologically destroyed". They spend 22.5 hours a day in their cell and "outside" is a small cage. "Homosexuals are the ones that come off best - at least they aren't starved of physical and emotional contact," the psychologist says.
Camp 22 (Kwan-Li-So No.22, Haengyong) North Korea
An estimated 2000 of it's 50000 inmates die each year due to starvation, beatings or executions. Set out like a Nazi concentration camp, rare inside accounts tell of detailed hard labour, physical abuse, routine rape and chemical experiments.
Gitarama Prison Rwanda
With most prisoners in for genocide-related crimes, very little love is lost as more than 6000 prisoners are said to cram into a site built for 500 inmates. Even food has been so scarce that reports of cannibalism are common. Condition are said to have improved in recent years after raw feces were found on wet floors and gangrene lead to amputations. But that doesn't allay the violence and mental disintegration that comes with putting so many crooks in the one place at a time when they can't even move.
Not to be confused with the fictional cakewalk Nicole Kidman went through in the '80s mini-series Bangkok Hilton, this place is a hell hole, where no inmate is in for less than 25 years. For the first three months they wear leg irons, and if on death row, leg irons are permanently welded on. The guards are out-numbered 50 to 1, so it's every man for himself. If you're sick, a lethal injection on death row is probably the best and most effective medication you can hope for.
There are plenty of tough prisons in the US. San Quentin and Rikers Island are legendary. In Colorado, the ADX concrete and steel sees prisoners suffer almost complete isolation and lose the plot. But the Huntsville, in Texas is the deadliest, as it's where the most executions in the US take place - 19 scumbags have been terminated here since January last year, helping Texas stay sane and safe. However if you are as badass as this guy then you are almost certainly going to wind up here!!!!!!