Keyword: Les Baumettes

French prison guards warn Marseille jail has become a 'holiday camp'

Inmates of Baumettes prison near Marseille ran a Facebook page that showed them posing with mobile phones, cannabis and fistfuls of cash.

Jailhouse rot: the scandalous conditions inside one of France's oldest prisons

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L'humidité dans un entre-deux (photo G. Korganow/CGLPL) L'humidité dans un entre-deux (photo G. Korganow/CGLPL)

France’s prison inspection agency this week published a scathing report on conditions at Marseille’s notoriously dilapidated jailhouse, Les Baumettes, which it described as amounting to “a grave violation of fundamental rights”, and has called on the government to take urgent remedial measures at the almost 80-year old prison where overcrowding reaches 146%. The insalubrious and understaffed prison was officially declared a fire hazard in 2011 and is, the inspectors found, home to colonies of rats, cockroaches and louse where racketeering and violence are rife. Michel Deléan reports.