Forget everything that you think you know about prisons based on what you see on the television. You should know that the worst prisons in the world are not open for public viewings unless you earn the right to stay there. These facilities are not only overcrowded, but inmates are also dealing with torture, abuse, violence, and disease. These are just some of the things they’re subjected to on a daily basis.
Forget the weight rooms, the ping-pong tables, and the orderly line of inmates in the mess hall. Today, you will get a taste of the 12 worst prisons in the world. There’s no particular order of this list, as each of them has its own terrifying parts.
1. New York’s Attica Correctional Facility
Located in the city that doesn’t sleep, Attica Correctional Facility is considered by many inmates who have spent time there as the top of the worst prisons in the world. Housing the most violent of offenders, riots are just a part of everyday life in this prison dating back to 1930.
2. Israel’s Camp 1931
In northern Israel, there is one of the worst prisons in the world, Camp 1931. This high-risk prison camp was so secretive it was only discovered a decade ago, even though it is less than an hour from Tel Aviv. Not only are the identities of the prisoners classified, but so are the actions that take place between prisoners and guards.
3. Kenya’s Kamiti Maximum Security Prison
The roughest place to be imprisoned in Kenya is the Kamiti Maximum Security Prison. Rumors of sodomy pale in comparison to the daily beatings that result in the deaths of inmates each day.
In addition to daily beatings between guards and inmates, there are unlimited cases of inmates developing ulcers, cholera, and suffering malnutrition. Housing mostly political prisoners, the inmates are treated like animals during their time.
4. Russia’s Petak Island Prison
When the worst prisons in the world come to mind, most think of Alcatraz in California. The Petak Island Prison in Russia is considered to be their version of Alcatraz, but hundreds of times worse.
Inmates spend days locked in maximum security cells, isolated from guards and inmates. Due to the close proximity to nearby freezing water and snow, those prisoners often die of hypothermia.
5. Russia’s Butyrka Prison
Russia makes the list again, and Butyrka Prison is considered even more dangerous than Petak Island. Cells that were made to hold 10 prisoners are stuffed with 100 inmates.
AIDS and tuberculosis are spread easily throughout the prison, a facility that is busting at the seams with 20,000 of the most violent criminals. Prisoners are subjected to hard labor and left to deal with illnesses with little interaction from the staff.
6. France’s La Sante Prison
Located in beautiful Paris, France, don’t let the surroundings of La Sante Prison catch you off guard. Considered to be one of the worst prisons in the world, this facility contains more lice and rats than there are prisoners.
Conditions are so deplorable in La Sante that inmates commit suicide on a regular basis. The jail was built in 1867, and it looks every bit of its age.
7. Lima’s San Juan de Lurigancho
Considered to be the roughest prison in South America, it is no wonder San Juan de Lurigancho makes the list of the worst prisons in the world. Constructed to hold 2,500 prisoners, today it has well over 7,000 inmates in close proximity to each other. Guards have no control any longer. As a result, inmates rule the prison and result in countless cases of rape and murder each week.
8. Rwanda’s Gitarama Central Prison
Prisoners in the United States don’t know how good they have it. The conditions in Gitarama Central Prison in Rwanda are so bad, that it isn’t uncommon for inmates to eat the flesh of other inmates to stay alive. Part of the reason for the incredibly horrible conditions is the prison was built to hold 400 war criminals. Today, the number has exploded to 7,000 inmates.
9. North Korea’s Camp 21
Even the worst prisons in the world have to stand back in disbelief at the conditions in Camp 21 in North Korea. This is a political prison camp isolated from the rest of the world. Therefore, conditions are most likely worse than even described. Not only are inmates subjected to decades of torture, but they are also imprisoned with their families. Many of these families are given life sentences of hard labor.
10. Brazil’s Carandiru Penitentiary
Originally opened in 1920, the Carandiru Penitentiary in Brazil was so overpopulated and disease-ridden that it closed in 2002. Not only were 111 inmates killed during a riot, but they were also dealing with 8,000 cases of AIDS throughout the facility.
11. Venezuela’s La Sabaneta
Looking at pictures of the deplorable and inhumane conditions inside La Sabeneta in Venezuela, you’ll understand why it is one of the worst prisons in the world. Not only are diseases of all sorts running rampant in the prison, but the cells are also flooded, dirty, and overcrowded. Add to the mix the understaffed facility which allows diseases to go untreated in La Sabaneta.
12. Turkey’s Diyarbakır Prison
Built in 1980, the Diyarbakir Prison in Turkey is considered to be the most inhumane and violent of all prison systems in the world. Those prisoners who are considered the worst of this bunch are locked in small cages where they have to squat with three other inmates.
The guards are not only handing out physical torture to inmates, but they also get mentally tortured too. The facility has different sectors that were designed to house hundreds. Currently, there are thousands of violent inmates.
13. New York’s Rikers Island
This prison is notorious for its secluded location and brutal disciplinary tactics.
Guards have been sued on multiple occasions by inmates and family members of inmates for doling out excessive punishments either themselves or through others. Surprisingly often, guards at Rikers Island have resorted to ordering multiple inmates to ambush others for a variety of reasons, resulting hospitalization of the victims and worse.
The injuries that inmates have sustained from guards at this facility include deep, sever lacerations, life-threatening head trauma and multiple broken bones. Suffice to say, this is definitely no place you would wan to stay.
This list of 12 of the worst prisons in the world barely scratches the surface. Many of the other prison systems are so bad that conditions are kept a secret from the outside world.
If you have heard of similar conditions in a prison not on the list, please share your information to help give our readers more understanding of the worst prisons in the world.