The European Court of Human Rights (ECHR) ruled in 2016 that Romania should pay compensations worth over EUR 1.6 million to inmates who complained about the improper detention conditions.
The amount was double compared to the total compensations ECHR ruled in similar cases in the 1990-2015 period, according to data from the National Administration of Penitentiaries (ANP). In total, the state paid EUR 3.1 million and CHF 10,000 between 1990 and 2016.
Last year, some 313 sentences handed down by the ECHR were sent to the Ministry of Finance, up from 75 in 2015.
ANP director Marius Vulpe said yesterday that a pardon law would not fully solve the problem of overcrowding in prisons. “Any legal action to reduce overcrowding in prisons is beneficial for both prisoners and prison staff,” he added.
Romanian prisons currently have, on average, 44% more prisoners than their capacity.
“The statistics show that pardon does not fully solve the problem,” Vulpe explained. He said that an alternative solution would be to reduce the sentences for people staying in overcrowded prisons.