ST. PETERSBURG, May 21 (RAPSI, Mikhail Telekhov) — It is planned that the Prison of the Future project envisaging development of a complex facility combining a pretrial detention center, correctional institutions of different types, a prison, courtrooms, offices of prosecutors and lawyers, sports grounds and a production base is to be implemented in Russia by 2024, Deputy Justice Minister Yevgeniy Zabarchuk said at The Modernization of National Prison Estates discussion session at the St. Petersburg International Legal Forum (SPBILF) 9 ¾ Vaccination by Law.

Zabarchuk explained that one such institution will be designed for 3,000 inmates and should reduce the respective costs borne by the penal system by 43 percent. The development of the project and its implementation are planned to be carried out by 2024. As a result of this and other projects to optimize the penitentiary system, by 2024, 88 outdated penal facilities out of 900 will be liquidated, Zabarchuk noted.

However, at present many institutions are located in remote areas, at a great distance from regional centers, whereas their structures and buildings have a high degree of deterioration. An important task is to prepare and approve the general scheme for the placement of penal institutions, what involves their relocation, the creation of better conditions of detention, as well as accomodation of convicts near their place of residence, the deputy minister explained.

Deputy Director of the Federal Penitentiary Service of Russia Valery Balan drew attention of the event participant to the fact that the number of prisoners in Russia is decreasing. According to him, today penitentiary institutions accomodate 44.7 percent fewer suspects, accused and convicted persons than in 2010, and in the world ranking Russia over the past decade has shifted from 20th to 26th place in terms of the number of prisoners per 100,000 citizens. The number of people sentenced to imprisonment is decreasing. In recent years, 900,000 people were sentenced to various types of sentences not related to imprisonment. This number includes convicts sentenced to compulsory labor, and it is growing from year to year, Balan said.

Among other participants of the event, the audience was addressed by Head of the Real Estate Office for the French Prison Administration Eric Besson, Head of the National Preventive Mechanism against torture of Italy Mauro Palma and partner at Jaeger & Associates Markus Jaeger.