The Guardian a écrit : Venezuela prison raid reveals inmates' private menagerie
Racoons, macaws, farm animals, dogs and endangered species discovered after 16 inmates died in riots at Sabaneta prison
When armed police stormed a Venezuelan prison where 16 inmates had just been killed in rioting, they will not have been surprised to find assault rifles, hand grenades and a stash of plastic explosives.
But they will have been astonished to also discover a private menagerie consisting of pedigree dogs and jungle animals – including several endangered species.
Venezuelan jails – notorious for their dire conditions and overcrowding – are largely under the control of heavily armed inmates. The raid at Sabaneta prison, in the western state of Zulia, has however revealed the some of the prisoners were also avid wildlife collectors.
Among the animals being kept were an ocelot, several caymans, raccoons, and a couple of macaws, according to a regional newspaper, La Verdad.
More than a dozen farm animals were found, including turkeys, pigs and cows, as well as an unspecified number of purebred dogs, including pitbulls, neapolitan mastiffs, siberian huskies and yorkshire terriers. It is not known to which inmate or inmates the animals belonged.
Sabaneta prison was built for 700 but currently houses more than 3,700 inmates, as well more than 192 children living alongside their imprisoned parents.
Last week's riots, which erupted after rival gangs clashed in a dispute to gain control of the prison, were some of the most brutal in recent years. Humberto Prado, of the Venezuelan Prison Observatory, said several inmates were dismembered.
Last year, close to 600 inmates were killed inside the country's 34 prisons.
Venezuela's minister for penitentiary affairs, Iris Varela, ordered the Sabaneta prison to be evacuated while a thorough search was conducted to guarantee that no weapons remained inside. The inmates will be transferred to several of the other jails across the country.
Sabaneta, ça a l'air d'un chouette endroit pour faire démarrer une équipe de ForSats (un prequel, quoi... Enfin du moins si j'ai bien tout compris à ForSats... faudra que je lise ce jeu dès que j'aurais un moment. Soupir !)
El Universal a écrit :In Sabaneta jail each leader has his own swimming pool
Inmates are watched by 40 wardens in each duty. Inside, as few as eight wardens, attached to the Ministry of Penitentiary Systems, monitor the facilities; the remaining 32 are National Guard officers
The benefits of being the "pran" (the prison leader) in any of the four areas that form part of Maracaibo National Prison, known as Sabaneta, in northwestern Zulia state, are clearly stated. Not only the weaponry or the huge amount of money produced inside are controlled, but also each of them counts on a swimming pool for his parties, in addition to a metal detector to check any "outsiders."
Perhaps the search in their areas is because the X-ray equipment located at the entrance of the jail to check visitors has been broken for more than nine months.
In the swimming pool area, the most important parties take place. They include the "celebration" of any deal made outside the jail.
The police inquests held in Maracaibo, the capital city of western Zulia state, and neighboring areas, found that most of the bribery is schemed inwards. It was proved that some wardens were accomplices. In January-February 2012, the Attorney General Office accused a warden of acting as envoy of the prisoners
The prison splits into four areas: Procemil, which hosts military officers or police agents; Reeducation, including petty criminals; Prison, a standard area with convicts for varied charges, and the Maximum, which holds most dangerous prisoners. The jail was built ending 1958, with a capacity for 900 inmates. Today, it holds 2,400.
Inmates are watched by 40 wardens in each duty. Inside, as few as eight wardens, attached to the Ministry of Penitentiary Systems, monitor the facilities; the remaining 32 are National Guard officers.
Prisoners also pay. They do it for many things; above all, for keeping alive. The "fries" (threatened prisoners) should pay USD 58-69 a week for their security.
In addition, inmates should pay if they are to meet with their relatives or spend a whole weekend with them inside the jail. If so, the "overnight" ought to be paid. The approval by the chief of the area could reach USD 116 a week. Such amount ensures the security of visitors from Friday evening to Monday morning.
Location for a video
There is still fuss in the jail. In middle May, a few minutes were shot of the video "Miedo Cabrón" (Bastard Fear) by the Puerto Rican-Venezuelan band "Los Catedrátikos."