Top 10 Most Violent And Deadliest Prisons In The World
The outside world is the only place that is safer to live than a prison. Any viewer who watches the evening news will quickly come to the conclusion that life is dangerous. As one violent crime leads to another, it becomes evident that there are significant flaws in human nature.
While it’s true that not everyone experiences the urge to harm someone physically, far too many people actively choose to act on this compulsion. A safe society must prioritize criminal justice because the outside world is dangerous. Prisons are built to hold criminals, and some are made especially for the most dangerous offenders in the world. The biggest threat to society comes from these criminals.
The oldest prison in California is San Quentin Prison, which opened its doors in 1852. The prison has a gas chamber, but it is only used for lethal injection executions. Even with a large guard force, violence at San Quentin remains a persistent problem. In one specific incident, 100 prisoners were injured in February 2006 as a result of racially motivated attacks. Two prisoners were also killed. The jail is notorious for its appalling conditions; in 2005, a report expressed the opinion that “housing people there is dangerous.”
The jail is notorious for its appalling conditions; in 2005, a report expressed the opinion that “housing people there is dangerous.”
One of Thailand’s harshest prisons, known as the “Bangkok Hilton,” is a short distance from Bangkok. There are a lot of foreign inmates at the Bang Kwang Maximum-Security Prison. Prisoners on death row are frequently given as little as two hours’ notice before being hauled off to be executed, and they are packed into tiny cells.
An inmate is required to wear shackles for the first three months of their sentence. Ten percent of the prisoners are on death row, where they are bound by iron shackles that are welded to their legs. Every prisoner is incarcerated for at least 25 years. One bowl of rice with vegetables, eaten once a day, provides nutrition. Prisoners can buy extra food or other necessities at the canteen. Malnutrition and avoidable illnesses plague many. The prison is extremely overcrowded, lacks running water, and has a poorly operating sewage system.
Don’t forget that it’s not just adults who serve prison time. It is not uncommon for minors to commit crimes and to find themselves in hazardous environments. In 2014, a report presented by U.S. Attorney Preet Bharara disclosed that Riker’s Island in New York City exposed teenagers to a considerable degree of abuse. He denounced the facility for using physical force, beatings, and verbal abuse. The investigation’s conclusions state that 1,057 injuries occurred in male prisoners who were 18 years of age or younger in 2013 alone (via NY Mag).
According to the report, “Rikers is a dangerous place for adolescents and a pervasive climate of fear exists.” It was discovered that the officers created a fearful environment and used “radios, batons, and broomsticks” against the teenage inmates.
Furthermore, Politico published data from 2019 that showed a marked increase in staff member assaults, inmate attacks on one another, and guards using force against detainees. Because of the out-of-control violence, Mayor Bill de Blasio supported a plan to close the facility and build four new jails in its place. City Council Member Rory Lancman, who is also in favor of permanently closing Rikers, stated, “The violence at Rikers has continued almost unabated for decades across multiple mayoral administrations and multiple commissioners.” According to Reuters, the New York City Council decided to close the jail complex by 2026 in October 2019.
Situated on Alcatraz Island off the coast of San Francisco, California, Alcatraz Island Prison has been closed for many years, but during its existence it held some of the most dangerous criminals in history. Among its most well-known inmates was Al “Scarface” Capone. The most infamous violent escape attempt from the prison was known as the “Battle of Alcatraz,” which took place in May 1946. On March 21, 1963, Alcatraz was forced to close due to the prison’s high maintenance costs and bad reputation.
Florence Prison’s ADXDesigned to house the worst offenders, ADX-Florence in Colorado keeps many of them in solitary confinement almost nonstop. A few prisoners filed a lawsuit in June of 2012. According to the lawsuit, the prison’s layout encourages mistreatment and torture of its inmates.
Prison is the last place everyone ever wish to go in, and most prisons are notorious for its violence and brutality.
La Sante prison, one of the most notorious in France, has seen many riots, killings, and escapes. Given that they are only permitted to take showers twice a week and that their cells are not properly ventilated, it is not surprising that prisoners experience a variety of health problems as a result of their ridiculous living circumstances.
A little over one hundred prisoners committed suicide at La Sante in 1999. The internal class structure that the prison system has developed worsens the living conditions of lower class inmates.
Turkey’s Diyarbakır Prison was constructed in the southeast in 1980. According to Place and See, it was first created by the Ministry of Justice but was later run by the military for a short while before returning to ministry control in 1988. It has a reputation for being overcrowded, just like a lot of the other facilities on this list. The Grand National Assembly of Turkey’s Human Rights Commission discovered in the 1990s that the prison held hundreds more inmates than it was designed to hold.
The 1980s were especially horrible for conditions, with frequent and severe torture of prisoners. 34 prisoners perished between 1981 and 1984 during what has been called “the hell of Diyarbakır” and “the period of barbarity.” Amnesty International was inundated with thousands of complaints alleging torture and more than a hundred deaths attributed to the practice. It was common for prison guards to beat, blindfold, hose down, and threaten inmates. The prisoners were denied food, water, and sleep. They were raped, humiliated, burned with cigarettes, made to stand for extended periods of time, made to exercise in sweltering weather, and hung by their arms.
According to the Stockholm Center for Freedom, Mehmet Sıdık Mese, an inmate, claimed as recently as 2020 that he was frequently beaten inside the facility with clubs and truncheons. It is said that the jail attempted to deny these allegations.
Within this severely overcrowded facility, over 3,700 inmates reside in quarters intended to hold 700 people. The prisoners become violent and sick from the overcrowding.
Guards in La Sabaneta operate under a corrupt system that gives preference to powerful and wealthy individuals. Only these chosen few are allowed to sleep in beds inside their cells; the others are forced to use hammocks in the hallways. Additionally, there is no daily schedule with predetermined activities, giving the prisoners complete freedom to act and behave however they please. This lack of mental stimulation combined with their small living quarters frequently results in extremely violent encounters.
One of the harshest prisons in the world for serving a sentence is Tadmor Military Prison in Palmyra, Syria. “Every aspect of it was designed to dehumanize its inhabitants,” according to Amnesty International.
In the jail’s history, June 1980 is the most infamous incident. President Hafez al-Assad escaped the Muslim Brotherhood’s attempt on his life. According to reports, he gives the order for soldiers to execute every prisoner they come across as payback for the attack. Closed in 2001, Tadmor reopened its doors in 2011. Today, it remains just as brutal.
Carandiru Penitentiary is known for its human rights violations. Built in 1890, Prison History states that it became so overcrowded in the 20th century that the inmates established their own regulations and took over leadership from the few guards on duty. The facility once housed 8,000 prisoners, many of whom were undernourished and got little medical attention. Many inmates contracted contagious illnesses that multiplied among them.
111 people lost their lives in a jail riot in 1992. Even the prisoners who turned themselves in were killed by military police when they intervened. Colonel Ubiratan Guimarães, the commanding officer, was taken into custody and subsequently freed following multiple mistrials. In 2006, he was assassinated. Between 1989 and 2001, Drauzio Varella worked as a doctor at the facility. He wrote a book in which he detailed the appalling conditions there. His testimony sparked a public uproar that ultimately resulted in the prison’s demolition in 2002. Currently, the remaining structure houses a public museum.
Curious to know what prisons are the biggest in the UK? Check out our top 10 largest prisons in the UK in terms of inmate …
Do you know what prison is the oldest in the UK and who is the oldest prisoner?
Who is the oldest prisoner in the world? Check out the answer in our list of the 10 oldest inmates on Earth below!