Hungary builds new prison to relieve overcrowding fuelled by people smuggling crackdown

New Hungarian prison under construction. (Source: Bv OP)
By Dénes Albert
2 Min Read

The Hungarian National Command of the Penitentiary Service (BvOP) is building a new maximum-security prison in Szabolcs-Szatmár-Bereg County, with a capacity of 1,500 prisoners.

The facility will provide jobs for almost 700 people in a settlement near the Romanian border.

“In Csenger, from January, the salary of a prison warden will reach HUF 400,000 a month (€1,060), and the minimum requirement for applying is a vocational qualification,” György Makula told Index.

The communications director of the BvOP added that the prison service has been prioritizing the expansion of accommodation for years.

Capacity for a maximum 1,500 inmates

Makula said that they will need around 700 staff to run the new institution and have opened a recruitment office in Csenger for those interested.

The training of the new correctional officers has already begun: Four classes have started their basic penitentiary studies, he added, revealing that the admission procedure and the 14-week basic training will be carried out locally in Csenger and that applicants will receive full pay throughout the training period.

Minister of Interior Sándor Pintér admitted at a hearing of the Parliament’s Defence and Law Enforcement Committee on Tuesday that Hungarian prisons are overcrowded; however, he added that container prisons have reduced overcrowding in the short-term pending the construction of the new facility.

The interior minister said that the Csenger prison would accommodate 1,000 prisoners in the first phase, with a second phase to add another 500 places. He pointed out that the overcrowding in prisons was largely caused by people smugglers.

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