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Interior of maximum-security prison Puente Grande

Crime Groups Control 65 Percent of State Prisons in Mexico: Report

Organized crime groups control 65 percent of state prisons in Mexico, according to a government report about prison conditions in the country published this...
Prison guards walk into Honduras's Támara prison

Series of Escapes Underscores Weakness of Honduras Prison System

Sixty-five people escaped from prison in less than 15 days in Honduras, highlighting the chronic dysfunction of the country's prison...
The escape of Marixa Ethelinda Lemus Pérez, alias “La Patrona,” is the latest blow to the country's prison system

‘La Patrona’ Escape From Guatemala Prison Spotlights Institutional Corruption

A former mayoral candidate turned criminal leader in Guatemala has escaped from one of the country's detention centers, further illustrating how corrupt...
The maximum security penitentiary of Puente Grande, in Jalisco

Mexico Prison Party Video Illustrates Lack of Control in Penitentiaries

A recently-released video recorded in a maximum-security prison in Mexico shows inmates throwing a party, serving as a reminder of the authority wielded by criminal...
A security officer asking Barrio 18 leaders to open the prison gates

Top Guatemala Prison Official Filmed Negotiating with Gangs: Report

A recently published video appears to show the head of Guatemala's penitentiary system negotiating with gang leaders in a maximum-security prison, a stark reminder...
Haiti’s prisons are the most overcrowded in the world

Report Proposes Offering Legal Aid to Curtail Prison Overcrowding in Haiti

A recent report advocates increasing legal assistance for Haiti's prisoners awaiting trial, an initiative that could lessen some of the human and financial losses...
Venezuela’s Minister Iris Varela

‘Neutralize’ the Riot, Venezuela Prison Minister Told Inmates

Recent comments on television by Venezuela's head of the penitentiary system blatantly exposed the extent to which prisons have been left under the inmates'...
A police officer inspecting a cell in La Joyita, Panama

Video of Armed Inmates Shows Conditions in Panama Prisons

A video recorded in a Panama prison showing inmates holding weapons casts new doubts on the state of the country's prison...
Alleged Barrio 18 members captured for attacks on police

Barrio 18 Members Arrested in Series of Attacks on Guatemala Police

Over a dozen alleged members of the Barrio 18 gang were arrested for their participation in a series of attacks against police stations in Guatemala City, which...
Alias "El Negro," recently escaped from prison (left), and his father, alias "El Azul" (right)

Latest Jailbreak Points to Weakness of Mexico’s Prison System

The son of a prominent Mexican drug cartel leader has escaped prison less than two months after being captured, highlighting the country's inability to keep...
Venezuela's General Penitentiary, the site of the mass grave

Mass Grave in Venezuela Prison Signals Authorities’ Lack of Control

The recent discovery of a mass grave in a Venezuela prison highlights the dangerous conditions that prevail in the country's penitentiary system, as well as the...
Mass incarceration for drug crimes is a major driver of prison overpopulation

Criminalizing Drug Use Has Been Counterproductive: Report

A new report criticizes the criminalization of drug use and concludes that the mass incarceration of small-time drug offenders has been inefficient and has led to a...