• Zoran Stevanović, PhD Institute for Criminological and Sociological Research, Belgrade


The article outlines organisation and functioning of prison system in Russia specifically focusing on status and treatment of inmates. In comparison to the European penitentiary system, Russian organisation, jurisdiction, number of prisons and prison-activities have specific features stemming from the concept of remorse and suffering that govern the penal system respectively. However, the process of reforming such system has been initiated and substational changes have already been introduced related to legal provisions, organisation and jurisdictions in execution of criminal sanctions. For decades, Russian prison system has been functioning as a part of Ministry of the Interior, with a rigid formal hierarchy reflected on detainee communities alike. With a of jurisdiction transition to the Ministry of Justice, constitutive changes have been created. Simultaneously with creation of more humane approach to inmates and advancing professional conditions relevant for serving prison sentence, correction methods and all related to sentence serving has underwent vital transformation. The right of inmates to work, the right to choose type of work as available in concrete correction unit and adequate labour compensation stand as the core of efforts to advance the system. At the beginning of 2013, there were 874,161 inmates in Russian correctional institutions what makes average of 615 prisoners to each 100,000 inhabitants and places Russia at the second place on the list of countries created upon this ratio, immedeately after the United States of America.

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