Fighting both with hazing
Federation Council Chairman Valentina Matvienko proposed to reform the Federal Penitentiary Service (FSIN), actually dividing it into two parts. Her initiative was followed by a scandal caused by the publication of a video recording of the prisoner's torture by members of the Yaroslavl Correctional Facility No. 1, which the speaker of the upper house of the Russian parliament called "a monstrous crime."
This situation showed that the FSIN needs changes, Matvienko said at a specially convened press conference in the Federation Council, citing as an example of reform the fight of the Ministry of Defense with hazing: "How many years we lived with this evil, when news came that young soldiers were tortured, humiliated? After all, we managed to cope with this. " In the opinion of the head of the Federation Council, in the penitentiary department it is necessary to separate the tasks of control and protection from the tasks of re-education and socialization. The latter, in her opinion, should be engaged in civil service.
It is difficult to combine the protection of convicts, their upbringing, socialization and the observance of the punishment regime for the FSIN's employees, the chairman of the expert council under the Federation Council Committee for Constitutional Legislation, Senator Alexander Bashkin agrees. In his opinion, the competence of the FSIN should be left to control, protect and ensure order in places of deprivation of liberty. "As far as re-education and labor rehabilitation, socialization, it is more a zone of responsibility of the Ministry of Labor," concluded Bashkin.
A video recording of torture in the Yaroslavl colony on July 20 was published by Novaya Gazeta. The video was filmed in June 2017. After its promulgation, the Investigative Committee detained seven workers of the colony, a case was opened under Art. 286 of the Criminal Code (abuse of office). The FSB conducts a review of the regional UFSIN.
How to split the FSIN
According to the source of RBC, close to the leadership of the Federal Penitentiary Service, the project of reforming the service in the state and legal department of the presidential administration has been discussed for more than a year, and it is supposed to be divided into two departments - civil and military. According to this project, the federal agency under the Ministry of Justice will be engaged in the economy, re-education and resocialization of prisoners, and the guard together with special units of the FSIN will transfer to Rosgvardia. At the same time, the powers of the FSIN as a subject of operational and investigative activity, as well as employees of the operational departments, which recruit agents in a criminal environment, listen to telephone conversations and search fugitive prisoners, will go to the Ministry of Internal Affairs.
The interlocutor of RBC in one of the law enforcement agencies specified that in the summer of 2017, after the report of the Accounts Chamber and the report of the presidential control and audit department, an interdepartmental working group was created, which, in closed mode, is preparing two options for reforming the FSIN. The group includes representatives of the Ministry of Internal Affairs, the FSB, the Ministry of Justice and the state and legal administration of the president. There are no representatives of the FSIN in this group, the interlocutor of RBC specified.
In both cases, the FSB will be strengthened over the agency. Under the first scenario, it is planned to abolish the management of its own security (CSS) and reduce the operational component of the FSIN. "The work of the CSS is not aimed at identifying violations, but on their concealment," the source said. According to him, the regular rates of operatives of the FSIN will be transferred to the FSB and the Ministry of Internal Affairs. "In the Ministry of Internal Affairs will be expanded criminal investigation units that will be engaged in the search for escaped criminals and other functions of the operational staff of the Federal Penitentiary Service," the source said. According to him, the FSB will take on the anti-corruption component, medical services for prisoners will be transferred to the Ministry of Health, and for the FSIN will remain the economic part and issues of compliance with the regime of execution of punishments, as well as the transfer of convicts.
On the second - more radical - scenario, perimeter protection, convoying, as well as spetsnaz is planned to be transferred to Rosgvardia. "Its duties will include suppression of riots in the colonies, which is already prescribed in the law on the troops of the National Guard," the source said. It will be similar to the Soviet experience, when correctional facilities were guarded by internal troops of the Ministry of Internal Affairs, now members of Rosgvardia. Everything related to the internal arrangement of the colonies - operational work with prisoners, educational work with the contingent and much more - will go to the Ministry of Internal Affairs, where it is planned to recreate the Main Directorate for the Execution of Sentences (GUIN). This option is shared by most of the participants in the working group, the source asserts.
However, according to another interlocutor of RBC, this option is hampered by Russia's obligations to the Council of Europe, according to which the prison service was separated from the Ministry of Internal Affairs and transferred to the Ministry of Justice. This in May 2018 was also reminiscent of the Deputy Director of the FSIN Valery Maksimenko. Answering the question about the possible transfer of the functions of the FSIN to the Ministry of Internal Affairs, Maksimenko recalled in an interview with the MK that in the conclusion of the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe of January 25, 1996, at the request of Russia for membership in this organization, an obligation was fixed, according to which "the administration of penitentiary institutions and supervision of the execution of sentences will be transferred to the competence of the Ministry of Justice. " "Thus, direct execution of punishments is most likely to be handled by the structure within the Ministry of Justice, and the Ministry of Internal Affairs - to solve operational problems," explained the source of RBC.
The interlocutor of RBC, close to the leadership of Rosgvardia, expressed doubts that it is possible to redistribute powers of the Federal Penitentiary Service between several agencies: "The uniform structure with the powers of operational and investigative activity should deal with the execution of punishments".
RBC sent requests to confirm and comment on the preparation of the reform of the prison department in the Ministry of Justice, FSIN, the Ministry of Internal Affairs and Rosgvardia. The press center of the Ministry of Internal Affairs recommended asking questions directly to the FSIN, in the department for interaction with the media Rosgvardia offered to apply to the Federation Council, where the proposals for reform were officially announced.
Human rights defenders vs.
Human rights defenders are most afraid of the merger of the FSIN with the Interior Ministry. "The enforcement service should remain a separate structure. The merger with the Ministry of Internal Affairs will definitely exacerbate the situation: the system will become even more closed and corrupt, "said Elena Sokolova, head of the Legal Zone organization, RBC.
In her opinion, it is necessary to fundamentally review the rules for recruiting employees to the FSIN and to strengthen control over their actions. "On paper there is a constant improvement in the quality of medical care, conditions of detention. All this is allocated huge money. But complaints about the conditions of detention, beatings, disgusting medicine from prisoners do not become less. Reforms of the FSIN should first of all provide prisoners with safe serving of punishment, "the human rights activist stated.
The first deputy chairman of the Public Chamber's Public Control Commission Artem Kiryanov agrees with the need to reform the system of execution of punishments. "There is obvious stagnation in the FSIN," Kiryanov says. "If other law enforcement agencies show the will to change, then we hear the same criticism from year to year and see that the situation is far from being considered acceptable. The correct administrative decision would be to directly subordinate the FSIN to the head of government, then to conduct an audit and redistribute the financial flows. "
In October 2017, the Center for Strategic Research Alexei Kudrin prepared his proposals on reforming the FSIN, the expert of the Center for Strategic Research, Olga Shepeleva, told RBC. To ensure that the history of torture in Russian prisons does not recur, the CSR experts suggested that they separate from the general structure of the FSIN a unit that will perform tasks related to escorting, protecting isolators and correctional facilities and maintaining security, and transferring the rest of the functions to civil servants appointed by competition or recruited from the general labor market specialists.
What is included in the FSIN
According to the official statistics of the Federal Penitentiary Service as of July 1, 2018, the agency has 295,967 people.
At the same time, there are 590,635 people in the penitentiary system, including 483,646 in 711 correctional colonies, 35,228 in 125 colonies, 2034 in seven correctional colonies for those sentenced to life imprisonment, 104,252 in investigative insulators and 96 premises functioning in the pre-trial detention center in the colonies, 1348 in eight prisons, and 1,389 minors in 23 educational colonies. At women's colonies there are 13 children's homes, in which 501 children live.
Expenses of the budget for the Federal Penitentiary Service in 2017 amounted to 290.3 billion rubles.
In 2017, experts at the University of Lausanne, based on data for 2014, estimated that the Russian government spent 22.5 euros per day for every prisoner in 2014, which is half the average for Europe (€ 52); Only the Transcaucasian and Balkan countries, as well as Lithuania, Romania and Moldova, economized more. At the same time, the budget of the Russian prison system in 2014 amounted to a record € 5.4 billion, which is € 2 billion more than the nearest competitor, the UK.
The FSIN also includes 81 penitentiary inspectorates and 1347 branches, in which 504,020 persons are registered, sentenced to punishments not related to isolation from the community, and 7,021 people suspected and / or accused of committing crimes under house arrest.
The FSIN also has 569 centers for labor adaptation of convicts, 75 production workshops and 31 federal state unitary enterprises.
664 medical units, 157 paramedic and 56 medical health centers, 55 medical and social rehabilitation centers, 73 military medical commissions, 73 centers for sanitary and epidemiological surveillance, 144 hospitals function in the structure of medical units of the Federal Penitentiary Service.
In prisons there are 283 general education organizations and 503 branches, 302 vocational educational institutions and 404 their structural subdivisions. As well as seven institutions of higher education, three institutions of professional development, an interregional training center, nine training centers of territorial bodies, the Research Institute of the Correctional System, the Research Institute of Information Technologies.
There are 698 facilities and more than 660 premises used for conducting religious rituals and ceremonies for professors of Orthodoxy, Islam, Buddhism, Judaism and Catholicism in the MIS institutions.
Also, the agency includes a joint editorial staff publishing journals "Crime and Punishment", "Vedomosti UIS", the newspaper "Kazenny Dom".