Surprise prison inspection shows overcrowding and long delays for detainees
Attorney General Hisham Barakat - YOUM7 (Archive)

CAIRO: Overcrowding and poor ventilation in detention units, along with administrative violations in registration of the detainees and delay in editing police reports have been observed in a number of police stations by the head of Imbaba public prosecution Alaa Samir, Al-Masry Al-Youm reported.

A series of surprise inspection visits to police stations in Cairo, Giza, Alexandria, Dakahlia, Asyut, Sohag and Minya were carried out Tuesday after being ordered by  Attorney General Hisham Barakat.

Several detainees at police station in Cairo’s southern district of Kerdasa allegedly reported that their charges “were fabricated by policemen.”

In Abu el-Nomros police station south of Giza, the public prosecutor monitored several violations including the detainees’ possession of mobile phones and cigarettes inside the detention unit along with lack of cleanliness of wash rooms of the police station.

The mandate was received by the general prosecutors 30 minutes before they began the visits “in order to ensure confidentiality and the seriousness” of the inspection visit, according to Barakat.

The move comes after several detainees have submitted legal complains to the public prosecution saying that they were subject to “beatings, assaults, humiliation and torture” inside police stations across the country.

The prosecutors, who have visited the prisons and offices of policemen and have checked the registries, are scheduled to submit their reports to the subsidiary prosecutions during the next few days before the reports are reviewed by Barakat for drafting a final report.

In March, members of The National Council for Human Right (NCHR) had paid an inspection visit to Abu Zaabal prison in north-east of Cairo over complaints regarding allegations of torture.

Following the visit, members submitted a report saying that beating marks were found on one of the prisoners, while others showed significant “panic and extreme fear.” The NCHR added that the prisoners had been indirectly threatened by prisoner authorities who warned them not to reveal any details of abuse.

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