Russian prison population shrinks by 152,000 in about four years
Moscow - The population of Russian prisons has shrunk by more than 150,000 over the past 3.5 years, Justice Minister Alexander Konovalov told the ministry's senior officials on the occasion of the ministry's anniversary.
A number of federal laws have been adopted over the past few years allowing the use of alternative measures and sanctions that are not connected with prison confinement, he said.
"The number of inmates held at Russian prisons decreased from 887,000 to 731,000 between January 2009 and June 2012," Konovalov said.
Courts have been applying alternative ways of punishment and this has not led to a rise in the crime rate, he said.
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