Netherlands to close prisons for lack of criminals
Deputy Justice Minister Nebahat Albayrak announced on Tuesday that eight prisons will be closed, resulting in the loss of 1,200 jobs. Natural redundancy and other measures should prevent any forced lay-offs, the minister said.
The overcapacity is a result of the declining crime rate, which the ministry’s research department expects to continue for some time.
Some reprieve might come from a deal with Belgium, which is facing overpopulation in its prisons. The two countries are working out an agreement to house Belgian prisoners in Dutch prisons. Some 500 Belgian prisoners could be transferred to the Tilburg prison by 2010.
The Netherlands would get 30 million euros in the deal, and it will allow the closing of the prisons in Rotterdam and Veenhuizen to be postponed until 2012.