HomeNewsBriefVenezuela Prison Opens Nightclub in Violence Reduction Strategy
BRIEF

Venezuela Prison Opens Nightclub in Violence Reduction Strategy

NARCOCULTURE / 1 APR 2013 BY MICHAEL TATONE EN

A Venezuelan prison marked the opening of a nightclub for inmates with an inauguration party complete with strippers and DJs, as part of an unconventional scheme to reduce prison violence.

Prisoners at the San Antonio prison on the Venezuelan island of Margarita used smart phones to coordinate the event, as well as to invite family members and friends through social networks, reported El Universal.

The new nightclub, called "El Yate Club" (the Yacht Club), has a capacity of 600 people, air conditioning and professional sound equipment, boasted the invitation sent by prisoners.

Prison Minister Iris Varela defended the recreational activities, saying they help to reduce prison violence.

InSight Crime Analysis

San Antonio prison is reportedly run by a drug trafficker called Teofilo Rodriguez, alias "El Conejo" and has already earned a reputation for its surreal atmosphere of heavily armed hedonism, with facilities including a palm-fringed swimming pool and a cock-fighting arena.

It is common for Venezuela prisons to be run by gang leaders like Rodriguez, known as "pranes," who manage the prisons' black market economies -- particularly drug distribution -- which are worth millions of dollars a year.

The position of prison minister was established in 2011 to address overcrowding and to reduce violence. Varela promised to establish sports and cultural programs for inmates, among other measures.

However, Venezuela still has one of the most violent prison systems in the region. Since Varela's appointment, over 500 inmates have died and up to 2,000 have been wounded.

share icon icon icon

Was this content helpful?

We want to sustain Latin America’s largest organized crime database, but in order to do so, we need resources.

DONATE

What are your thoughts? Click here to send InSight Crime your comments.

We encourage readers to copy and distribute our work for non-commercial purposes, with attribution to InSight Crime in the byline and links to the original at both the top and bottom of the article. Check the Creative Commons website for more details of how to share our work, and please send us an email if you use an article.

Was this content helpful?

We want to sustain Latin America’s largest organized crime database, but in order to do so, we need resources.

DONATE

Related Content

GENDER AND CRIME / 25 MAR 2021

The shooting death of a 19-year-old woman in a Venezuela police holding cell has revealed that women in the jail…

COVID AND CRIME / 16 DEC 2020

Several inmates at a Venezuela prison scaled a wall to escape to a part of the complex where prison bosses…

BARRIO 18 / 25 APR 2021

The ideas of masculinity, discrimination and homophobia within El Salvador's gangs are at the heart of "Unforgivable," a documentary who…

About InSight Crime

THE ORGANIZATION

‘Ndrangheta Investigation, Exclusive Interview With Suriname President Make Waves

2 DEC 2022

Two weeks ago, InSight Crime published an investigation into how Italian mafia clan the ‘Ndrangheta built a cocaine trafficking network from South America to ‘Ndrangheta-controlled Italian ports. The investigation generated…

WORK WITH US

Open Position: Full Stack WordPress Developer

28 NOV 2022

As Full Stack WordPress Developer You Will: Work collaboratively with other developers and designers to maintain and improve organizational standards.Demonstrate a high level of attention to detail, and implement best…

THE ORGANIZATION

Join Us This #GivingTuesday in Exposing Organized Crime

24 NOV 2022

For over twelve years, InSight Crime has contributed to the global dialogue on organized crime and corruption. Our work has provided policymakers, analysts, academics, journalists, and the general public with…

THE ORGANIZATION

Like Crime, Our Coverage Knows No Borders

18 NOV 2022

The nature of global organized crime means that while InSight Crime focuses on Latin America, we also follow criminal dynamics worldwide. InSight Crime investigator Alessandro Ford covers the connections between Latin American and European…

THE ORGANIZATION

Using Data to Expose Crime

11 NOV 2022

Co-director Jeremy McDermott made a virtual presentation at a conference hosted by the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC). The ‘Sixth International Conference on Governance, Crime, and Justice…