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Italy's inmates up over 11 years, but lower than 2010

Figure dropped slightly, but jails still overcrowded, says Istat

Italy's inmates up over 11 years, but lower than 2010

Rome, December 18 - Italian statistics agency Istat said on Tuesday that over the last 11 years the country's prison population has increased by 25.8%, though remained lower than European per capita figures. Overcrowding, however, is the second highest in Europe, with 153 prisoners per 100 beds, just below Serbia where the rate is 172 per 100 beds. Marco Pannella, the historic leader of Italy's Radical Party, continues a week-long thirst-and-hunger strike over conditions in the nation's prisons calling for an amnesty to stop chronic overcrowding and for prisoners to have the right to vote. According to the Istat report, 66,897 prisoners were registered in the country's jails in December 2011, a reduction of 1.6% compared to figures from December 2010. The average EU rate of detention per 100,000 inhabitants is 127.7, while Italy's figure is slightly less at 112.6. Istat also reported that 20.5% of inmates are still awaiting trial and 11.1% are in appeals. Just over half (56.8%) are serving definitive convictions, while the most common violations are drug related (27,459), followed by property crimes such as robbery and theft. Photo: Leader of Italy's Radical Party, Marco Pannella

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