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 About 6,000 convicts released under Savchenko law, - Minister Petrenko

Some 6,000 convicts have taken advantage of the 'Savchenko law' (the law of Ukraine No. 838) that stipulates equating each day spent in a pre-trial facility to two days in prison.

As reported by Censor.NET, Justice Minister Pavlo Petrenko said it in an interview with Hlavkom.

"According to the Penitentiary Service, this law has benefited some 6,000 convicts," the minister said.

He noted the law was logically correct: "In Ukraine, people are held in pre-trial facilities over many years, with detention conditions being much worse than those in prison. Cells for ordinary people at Lukianivske pre-trial detention center are not for the faint-hearted.

"At the same time, a person in a pre-trial facility is not a criminal yet as no sentence has been delivered against them. So, the idea is correct: unless the state is able to provide adequate detention conditions for those who have not been found guilty yet, such a mechanism is acceptable.

"That is why I oppose the cancellation of the 'Savchenko law.' But we should introduce technical amendments relating to a number of crimes, namely violent crimes, murder, rape, bodily harm resulting in death, as well as crimes related to terrorism and encroachment on national security and defense. With these crimes, a person shall not be eligible for a simplified procedure of choosing a prison term.

"Nadiia (Savchenko) is back, she is ready for active work. I think we will hold consultations as it was her bill. The Ministry of Justice already has its own list of articles. It should not be too lengthy. If there is support, and the prosecutor's office determines the articles, we'll introduce these changes."

Read more: "No clandestine torture chambers and unrecorded imprisoned LPR/DPR members found," - Lutsenko on snap inspection of SBU jail

According to Petrenko, some 70,000 people are being held in prisons and pre-trial detention centers.

"The system provides for the detention of about 200,000 people. The humanization process makes this figure fall to 140,000," he said.

The minister noted that 70,000 prisoners require 30,000 penitentiary personnel: "70,000 prisoners require 30,000 staff and 45,000 hectares of land."

As previously reported, on Nov. 26, 2015, the Verkhovna Rada passed the law drafted by Nadiia Savchenko. The law stipulates equating each day spent in a pre-trial facility with two days in prison. It came into force on Dec. 24 of the same year.
 
 
 
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