During a press conference on Wednesday, the President of Costa Rica announced that he would sign a decree aimed at restoring social peace. The decree will amend the Regulations of the National Penitentiary System to toughen the conditions for criminals convicted of organized crime, homicide, and sex crimes.
Currently, these criminals can opt for a custodial or semi-institutional regime until they have served at least half of their sentence.
“With this decree, we will end the practice of granting benefits to high-sentenced criminals who are released on our streets without proper reintegration into society,” said the President.
He confirmed that his administration continues to fight against the insecurity caused by the country’s crime wave, and decisive actions are being taken. The President acknowledged that the government respects the human rights of prisoners and believes in their correct social insertion. However, the current situation demands more rigorous measures.
“I believe in the rights of all human beings, but we must also protect the human rights of law-abiding citizens. We are signing a decree so that offenders of sexual crimes, drug trafficking, and homicides cannot opt for prison benefits until they have served half of their sentence. If they must serve a 12-year sentence, they know they will spend at least six years in prison,” said the President.
The government considers public security a fundamental issue and will present legal reforms to the Legislative Assembly to restore peace in Costa Rica. “The sentencing guidelines are lax, and we need to change the law to fix that,” said the President.
Costa Rica has been experiencing a crime wave that has alarmed citizens, who are calling for concrete actions to tackle the issue. The government and legislators are expected to announce agreements and reforms soon to address the situation.