Norway Prison System: Will Breivik Go to Halden Fengsel Prison?
Anders Breivik Faces 'Luxury Incarceration' at Halden Fengsel Prison
Anders Behring Breivik, having confessed to the Oslo bombing and Utoya massacre, is being held in a super-max prison. However, those not familiar with Norway's prison system may be surprised at the conditions he faces. Anders Breivik will likely head to the newly-built Halden Fengsel Prison, which houses Norway's hardest inmates.
Norway's prison system is based around rehabilitation, rather than punishment. The conditions are more Holiday Inn than Oz or Prison Break. Some of the amenities enjoyed by Norwegian inmates:
- Private cells with mini-fridges and en-suite showers
- No bars on the (large) windows
- Flat-screen TVs
- Cooking classes
- Gym with climbing wall
- Jogging trails
- 50% of guards are female
Also, the maximum sentence is 21 years. However, five-year increments can be added at the government's discretion, depending on the criminal. Breivik faces a life sentence, handed down incrementally.
The aim of this incarceration style is to avoid recidivism. The dehumanizing experience of doing time in a US prison is partly blamed for America's unusually high recidivism rate (over 60%)are re-arrested within three years). Norway's recidivism rate: roughly 20%.
This is the diametric opposite to the US prison system, which focuses on punishment. Also, Norway has a remarkably lower violent crime rate than the US, with 1/8 as many homicides per capita. Only 23 police officers have been killed in the line of duty in Norway since World War II. Anders Behring Breivik has confessed to carrying out the largest mass murder in Norway's history.