Prague, Czech Republic – New European data shows that the Czech Republic and Poland have two of the highest shares of prisoners in the EU.
With 232 prisoners per 100,000 inhabitants, Lithuania takes the top spot as the EU state with the highest rate of people incarcerated as compared to the country’s overall population.
The Czech Republic comes second with nearly 230 prisoners per 100,000 people, followed by Estonia (207 / 100,000), Poland (196) and Latvia (193). Slovakia and Hungary come next with respectively 184 and 177 prisoners for every 100,000 inhabitants.
The seven EU countries with the highest incarceration rate are all located in Central and Eastern Europe – well above the EU average of 116 per 100,000 people (the lowest level since 2000).
At the other end of the scope, Finland has the lowest prisoners rate in the EU (56 per 100,000 people), followed by Sweden (57), Denmark (59), Slovenia and the Netherlands (64). On average in the EU, 5% of prisoners were women.
The figures presented here come from Eurostat’s prison statistics collected for 2017 – the latest year available.