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NCJRS Abstract

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NCJ Number: 68209 Find in a Library
Title: PENALTIES INVOLVING LOSS OF PERSONAL FREEDOM AND PREVENTIVE DETENTION IN THE PANAMANIAN LEGISLATION (FROM CRIMINOLOGY - FIRST NATIONAL SEMINAR, P 117, 119-142, 1976 - SEE NCJ-68204)
Author(s): A E GUERRA DE VILLALAZ; C E MUNOZ
Date Published: 1976
Page Count: 25
Format: Document
Language: Spanish
Country: Panama
Annotation: IN THE GENERAL CONTEXT OF THE PANAMANIAN CORRECTIONAL SYSTEM, WHICH IS IN NEED OF PROGRESSIVE AND HUMANE REFORMS AT ALL LEVELS, PREVENTIVE DETENTION IS CHOSEN AS AN EXAMPLE OF CRUEL AND UNLAWFUL PUNISHMENT.
Abstract: THIS STUDY, DEVOTED TO THE ANALYSIS AND CRITIQUE OF THE PANAMANIAN CORRECTIONAL SYSTEM, BEGINS BY PLACING THE SYSTEM IN THE GENERAL FRAMEWORK OF VARIOUS PENOLOGICAL SCHOOLS OF THOUGHT. THE TRANSFORMATION OF CORRECTIONAL PHILOSOPHIES FROM PUNISHMENT AND RETRIBUTION, WHICH ALONE JUSTIFIED THE LOSS OF PERSONAL FREEDOM AND OF ALL CIVIL RIGHTS FOR CONVICTED OFFENDERS, TO THE NEWER CONCEPTS INVOLVING REHABILITATION AND SOCIAL REINTEGRATION AS BASIC GOALS OF CORRECTIONS, IS DESCRIBED. ACCORDING TO THE PANAMANIAN CRIMINAL CODES, SECURITY, REHABILITATION, AND SOCIAL DEFENSE ARE THE PURPOSES OF PENAL SANCTIONS BASED ON IMPRISONMENT. ALTHOUGH CRIMINAL LAWS CONTEMPLATE THE POSSIBILITY OF RELEASE OF CERTAIN OFFENDERS UNDER HARD-TO-MEET CONDITIONS, IN PRACTICE SUCH RELEASES SELDOM OR NEVER OCCUR. ALL PRISON INMATES ARE OBLIGED TO WORK. IN PANAMANIAN CORRECTIONAL INSTITUTIONS WORK IS NOT A REHABILITATION TOOL, BUT AS SHAMEFUL EXPLOITATION. INMATES ARE FORCED TO WORK 7 DAYS A WEEK. POOR NUTRITION, INDETERMINATE NUMBER OF HOURS, ABSENCE OF REMUNERATION MARK THEIR LOT. THIS SITUATION IS TOTALLY INHUMANE AND INDEED UNLAWFUL WHEN IT APPLIED TO CRIMINAL DEFENDANTS AWAITING TRIAL AND DURING TRIAL. SUCH VIOLATIONS NOT ONLY OF PRISONERS' RIGHTS BUT OF HUMAN RIGHTS CALL FOR A TOTAL REFORM OF THE PANAMANIAN PENAL CODE, ESPECIALLY WITH REGARD TO THE WHOLE PREVENTIVE DETENTION SYSTEM. THE QUESTION OF FORCED LABOR OR PENAL SERVITUDE USED AS A TOOL OF EXPLOITATION MUST BE GIVEN PRIORITY AND PREVENTIVE DETENTION MUST BE ABOLISHED, EXCEPT IN CASES OF MURDER OR OTHER HEINOUS CRIMES. A PANAMANIAN PENAL COLONY, WHERE CONVICT LABOR IS BEING USED TO BUILD A TOURIST CENTER AND AN AGRICULTURAL PARK, IS CITED AS A MONUMENT TO THE INHUMANITY OF THE SYSTEM.
Index Term(s): Correctional industries; Detention; Panama; Preventive detention; Prisoner's rights; Rights of the accused
To cite this abstract, use the following link:
http://www.ncjrs.gov/App/publications/abstract.aspx?ID=68209

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