Unions of magistrates and lawyers denounced on Wednesday the reaction of the Minister of Justice Éric Dupond-Moretti after a karting test at the prison of Fresnes seeing it as “a demagogic and security communication dictated by the far right”. Organized at the end of July in the prison of Val-de-Marne, an event called “Koh Lantess”, inspired by the game show Koh Lanta, including in particular a karting event within the premises of the establishment, aroused a very lively controversy, coming in particular from the far right and the right, after images broadcast on social networks.
Visiting Fleury-Mérogis prison (Essonne) on Tuesday, the Keeper of the Seals said that if he had known that “a karting competition was organized, (he would have) put a very clear veto” on this initiative. In the process, the Minister of Justice announced on Twitter the publication of a circular to set “the conditions necessary for carrying out reintegration projects in prison”, now “subject to the express validation of the management of the administration. penitentiary”.
Following the investigation report, I am going to take out a circular to clearly set out the conditions necessary for the holding of reintegration projects in prison. From now on, they will all have to be subject to express validation by the management of the prison administration. https://t.co/OqGMZqGKUz
— Eric Dupond-Moretti (@E_DupondM) August 23, 2022
The minister agitates “the populist myth of the prison ‘club med'”
“Two years after the condemnation of France by the European Court of Human Rights (ECHR) for the unworthy and degrading nature of the conditions of detention in its penitentiary establishments, including that of Fresnes, and while the rats and bedbugs of bed are still running there, our organizations are indignant that the Keeper of the Seals is moved by a reintegration action”, reacted in a joint press release the Syndicat de la magistrature (SM, ranked on the left), the Syndicat des lawyers of France (SAF) and the National Association of Sentence Enforcement Judges (Anjap).
The minister chose “to shake up the populist myth of the ‘club med’ prison, which is too comfortable or recreational, rather than recalling the prison reality that the 72,000 inmates and prison staff live in French prisons on a daily basis”, the signatories are offended in a press release.
When a minister without an immunity totem finds himself adrift on the banks of the RN, he does not hesitate to sacrifice certain principles: from the reintegration of convicts to the responsibility of his administration, nothing stops him. Our common CP ⤵️ pic.twitter.com/Puum0ywDp6
— SMagistrature (@SMagistrature) August 24, 2022
Regularly organized events
“The Keeper of the Seals, from whom we would have expected a peaceful reminder of the meaning of the sentence and prison labor, ignores the objectives of the sentence stated in article 707 of the code of criminal procedure: the prevention of recidivism and the protection of society, who cannot depart from the reintegration of the condemned”, believe SM, SAF and Anjap.
Many sporting or cultural events are regularly organized in the prisons. Thus, in Fresnes, in April, detainees took part in a concert with the philharmonic orchestra of Radio France.