Technologies and challenges of the Prison System - EL PAcCTO
Latin America / Penitentiary systems

Technologies and challenges of the Prison System

04 October 2021
Tecnologías penitenciarias

One of the most problematic aspects of Latin American prisons is that, for various reasons, they can turn into veritable crime schools. Criminal organisations can continue directing their illicit activities from inside prisons, instigating the recruitment and forced conversion of inmates.

The police forces, in the legal framework inherent to each country, have to use intelligence techniques to collect information on large criminal groups for judicial purposes. For the proper investigation of criminal groups, it is vitally important to know the dynamics and the alternative information that can be obtained within a prison. In this area,  prison intelligence is crucial.

On 28 September, a webinar was held on the technology inherent to the prison intelligence system in prisons. The prison systems of all the European member countries of the Consortium (Portugal, Spain, France and Italy) have shared their best practices in terms of prison intelligence technologies. We highlight the important participation of the delegations of Argentina, Brazil, Costa Rica, Paraguay, Mexico and Uruguay.

Reunión online

Europe presents its technological expertise to Latin American countries.

Portugal focused on the technological aspects of prison perimeter security, with particular focus on preventing escapes, drone intrusion and visitor control; Italy focused its presentation on the means that should be used to guarantee the internal security of prisons, illustrating all the tools for video surveillance and anti-aggression systems, and presenting the design methods for high-security wings; France, for its part, explored the subject of private indivuals’ communications with the outside world (telephone calls to relatives on the landline network and problems related to mobile phones within prisons). Finally, Spain shared its experience with telematic control and with laboratories and training environments for Polymorphic Programming Language (PPL).

The Webinar held provided the first opportunity to exchange information on the technologies that can be adopted within prisons to prevent detainees involved in Organised Transnational Crime from continuing to exercise control of the local area by giving orders through the management of criminal activities outside the prison system. It is designed to be a starter activity to be followed by future technical support on the use of specific technologies, depending on the countries’ demands.