Nearly 10,000 in­mates freed

Kuwait Times - - Internatio­nal -

MANILA: Nearly 10,000 prison in­mates have been re­leased in the Philip­pines as the coun­try races to halt coro­n­avirus in­fec­tions in its over­crowded jails, a Supreme Court of­fi­cial said Satur­day. The move fol­lows a di­rec­tive to lower courts to re­lease those await­ing trial in prison be­cause they could not af­ford bail, As­so­ciate Supreme Court Jus­tice Mario Vic­tor Leo­nen told re­porters. “The court is very much aware of the con­gested sit­u­a­tion in our prisons,” Leo­nen told re­porters as he an­nounced the re­lease of 9,731 in­mates. COVID-19 out­breaks have been re­ported at some of the coun­try’s most over­crowded jails, af­fect­ing both in­mates as well as cor­rec­tions per­son­nel. So­cial dis­tanc­ing is all but im­pos­si­ble in the coun­try’s prison sys­tem, where cells are some­times filled to five times their ca­pac­ity due to in­ad­e­quate in­fra­struc­ture and a slow-mov­ing and over­bur­dened ju­di­cial sys­tem.

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