Number of prisoners in Estonian jails falls below 2,000 for first time

Tallinn's new prison.
Tallinn's new prison. Source: Priit Mürk/ERR

The number of prisoners in Estonian jails has dropped below 2,000 for the first time since the restoration of independence in 1991, Postimees reported on Tuesday.

On Monday, there were 1,994 prisoners in Estonia and of those 202 are in open prisons, the newspaper reported.

Additionally, there are 3,294 offenders under the supervision of probation officers on a daily basis.

The number of prisoners has fallen due to a growing number of alternatives to imprisonment over the last two decades, the prison service said.

Serving a sentence in regular society does not cut people off from their support network and work, it said.

"Daily work with offenders is also important, supporting them and guiding them towards a law-abiding path, all of which is showing positive results. Almost 70 percent of those who have been to prison do not commit crimes again in the next two years," the prison service added.

The number of prisoners has been on a downward trend for years, a decade ago there were almost 4,400 people in Estonian detention facilities.


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Editor: Helen Wright

Source: Postimees

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