Go TO Content

AOC Violates ICCPR by not Separating Defendants from Prisoners in Detention; CY Urges Improvement

  • PostDate:2021-04-29

In order to solve prison overcrowding, the Agency of Corrections (AOC) put accused persons, who are presumed innocent, in the branch prisons of non-prison correction agencies, leading to worse detention conditions than those of actual inmates and violating the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (ICCPR), which states that untried persons should be separated from convicted detainees. Therefore, the CY has urged the AOC to review the situation and make improvements.

The CY members reiterated that the intended function of non-prison correction agencies (such as detention centers, skill training institutions, and rehab institutions) is to house defendants. In principle, defendants have no need for correction when they have not been convicted. Moreover, without investigation sections and edification sections in non-prison correction agencies, prisoners with short sentences cannot receive the treatment they deserve.

The investigation conducted by the CY found that in order to solve prison overcrowding, the AOC requested 20 non-prison correction agencies to set up branch prisons to house prisoners with short sentences and untried persons in the same location, violating Article 10, Paragraph 2, Point 1 of the ICCPR: “Accused persons shall […] be segregated from convicted persons.”

According to AOC statistics, as of the end of August 2019, the number of inmates in non-prison correction agencies due to the establishment of branch prisons was 12,892, which was between 46.46% and 100% of total capacity in each agency and greater than the total number of defendants, people under observation, people in rehab, juvenile inmates, and people subjected to compulsory labor in such correction agencies (2,126 people).  

The AOC put prisoners with short sentences and untried persons in the branch prisons of non-prison correction agencies, resulting in correction agencies more overcrowded than prisons and leading to worse living conditions for accused persons, who are presumed to be innocent. The CY has urged the AOC to review and improve the situation.