According to statistics, most prisoners sitting for different crimes can be found in Lithuania. On the other hand, the most crowded prisons are in Hungary. The statement that the number of prisoners decreases is true for the whole continent alongside the average time people spend in prisons. This phenomenon is due to the nations’ penalty systems and the number of alternative punishments in countries.

A couple of weeks ago, the European Council released an official document about prison statistics in forty-seven European states – reports Index. It is a European phenomenon that the number of prisoners decreases every year, which is due to new alternative methods to punish them and because keeping these persons in prison is expensive. The most significant decrease between 2016 and 2018 was in Romania and Bulgaria. Most prisoners are in Lithuania, Czech Republic, Latvia, Poland, Estonia, Slovenia, Denmark, the Netherlands, Sweden, and Finland.

Hungary is the seventh country in Europe with the most prisoners; there are approximately 173 prisoners among 100,000 Hungarians.

The first Hungarian prison was built in 1842 in Balassagyarmat (Nógrád County) and opened three years later. The prison is still active today. The building is the shape of a circle, and all the slots are located in the centre of the building. This means, that the outside world can be seen only from the corridors. The only entertainment for prisoners for years was listening to a mass every day in order to confess their sins. The building has not changed since it was built. Today it is regarded to be the most grinding prison in the country.

Balassagyarmat, prison, Hungary
Photo: Wikimedia Commons by Civertan Grafikai Stúdió

On the contrary, in Swedish prisons, prisoners have the opportunity to play basketball with the guards, to cook and to order a pizza as well.

Regarding the number of prisoners, Hungarian prisons are the most overcrowded on the continent. On December 31, 2017, approximately 17,343 people were imprisoned, which was 24% more than the average capacity of Hungarian prisons. Still, this is the highest data in the official document even though, since 2017, the number of criminals decreased in the country. Besides Hungary, Macedonia, Romania, and France have the same problem. The biggest loafing are in the prisons of Bulgaria, Spain, and Latvia.

Most wanted Hungarian criminals

Attila Ambrus, the Whiskey bandit, is probably the most well-known criminal in Hungary, whose life inspired moviemakers in 2017. Apart from Ambrus, other criminals are still hiding from authorities or are already arrested by the Hungarian police. These three persons listed in this article are among the recently most wanted criminals, who are not yet been caught by the police. So here we introduce three people from the top 50 most wanted criminals by the Hungarian Police Department.



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