Hraparak newspaper today published an anonymous letter from an inmate of Yerevan’s Nubarashen prison addressed to newly-appointed Armenian prime minister Karen Karapetyan.
In the letter to the PM the prisoner writes about the “embezzlement schemes” running in Armenia’s prisons and expresses his hope that Karapetyan will take measures to combat this phenomenon.
“[…] There is a field where huge amounts of money are being embezzled. Actually exercising the provisions for prisoners’ early release would save tens of millions of dollars for the justice system budget and would close one of the channels of corruption.
“It’s no secret that convicts constitute large sums of money for a number of justice officials. Even if we don’t take into account the shadow turnover and speak solely about the monthly allowance for the purchase of food rations for prisoners – officials spend only 30 thousand drams of the allocated 120 thousand to buy the cheapest and most low-quality grains. The rest is pocketed.
“This information can be easily verified; you’d be shocked by what Ishkhan Zakaryan’s Control Chamber would discover if it were to spend a couple of days at any prison [in Armenia]. That’s why the early release provisions are not being exercised; why would so many people knowingly deprive themselves of so much income? The more inmates, the more profit.”