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Paper: Dangerous prisoners under 2-year surveillance after release

Daily Turun Sanomat reports that the Ministry of Justice is preparing a bill that would place inmates considered dangerous under two years of surveillance after being released from prison.

Sörnäisten vankila.
Sörnäinen prison in Helsinki. Image: Jyrki Valkama / Yle

A bill is being prepared at the Ministry of Justice that would order dangerous released prisoners to be placed under surveillance for two years. No such control exists in Finnish law as yet. If the law is passed it would be enacted as early as autumn 2016.

Annually some 30-40 prisoners in Finnish prisons are considered dangerous, and a handful of them are released each year. All dangerous prisoners are also high-risk recidivists and have committed serious violent crimes in the last decade.

Experts consider the law change high priority. Normally prisoners are released on parole or into probationary freedom after serving half or two thirds of their sentence.

Bill could save lives

A prisoner who has been classified as dangerous will usually serve out their entire sentence to the day, but is released into society without probationary measures.

"These individuals are the most likely to commit violent crimes again. This law would probably save human lives," says chief physician Hannu Lauerma from the Turku unit of the Psychiatric Hospital for Prisoners.

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