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Romania might pay EUR 80m following complaints over prison conditions

Justice minister Raluca Prună said on Tuesday that a request had been sent to the European Court of Human Rights asking for a postponement in the penitentiaries case. The ECHR decision would compel Romania to pay about EUR 80 M for the inmates’ maintenance.

“The Government adopted a memorandum asking ECHR to postpone a pilot decision in this case, as it would involve a high cost for the Romanian state. Romania would not be the first country to have this decision. There is the precedent of Italy, with ECHR compelling it to pay EUR 8 per day for each detention day for all convicts. That means the Italian state is paying EUR 78 M every year (…) even if it is EUR 4 per day, the Romanian state would have to pay about EUR 80 M or 28,000 inmates,” the Justice minister told the parliamentary committee for abuses on Tuesday.

She added that the government would send a timetable of precise actions for improving the situation of the penitentiaries in maximum 8 weeks.

Minister Prună argued that Romania is losing trials at the ECHR on the line, while it had to pay EUR 460,000 in 2015, following complaints settled at the European court.

“Penitentiaries in Romania are overcrowded. We have plenty of complaints at ECHR, 75 last year (…) and about EUR 460,000 paid by the Romanian states to the claimants, which means a double amount compared to 2015,” Raluca Prună explained.

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