Don't miss

Replay


LATEST SHOWS

THE DEBATE

Wannacry more: How vulnerable are we to cyber attacks?

Read more

FOCUS

Spain struggles to tackle violence against women

Read more

MIDDLE EAST MATTERS

How drones are transforming the battleground in Syria

Read more

ENCORE!

Film show: The Netflix debate, 'Faces Places' and 'Marnie'

Read more

EYE ON AFRICA

Over 8,000 migrants rescued from Mediterranean in 48 hours

Read more

THE DEBATE

Farewell to arms? Crucial step for Colombia peace process

Read more

IN THE PAPERS

Angela Merkel softens resistance to gay marriage

Read more

IN THE PAPERS

'Medically assisted procreation for everyone?'

Read more

BUSINESS DAILY

Tracking the ransom payments amid latest global cyberattack

Read more

Europe

Probe to determine guards responsibility in jail fire death

Text by News Wires

Latest update : 2010-04-26

After Swiss media reported the alleged passivity of prison guards while a detainee was dying in a fire he lit in his cell, a judge opened an investigation of the death.

AFP - Swiss judicial authorities said Monday that they were investigating the death of a prisoner after media reported that guards delayed intervening for 90 minutes following a fire in his cell.

"An investigation was opened to shed light on the circumstances that led to the death of (Skander) Vogt," an investigating magistrate in the western Swiss canton of Vaud, Daniel Stoll, told AFP.

Vogt, 30, died of suffocation from smoke inhalation in his cell at Bochuz prison on March 11, reportedly after setting fire to his mattress overnight.

Transcripts of phone calls involving prison officials, police and rescue services published by Swiss newspaper Le Matin indicated that staff had delayed fully intervening as they waited for special units to deal with the high security detainee.

French radio RTL broadcast what it said were extracts of the recordings on Sunday in which some of those involved appeared to make insulting or mocking comments about Vogt while he was suffocating.

After one guard remarked that he could die after 50 minutes of breathing smoke, a colleague reportedly replied: "Yeah, well that'll do him some good."

Local authorities also launched an inquiry into the leak of the recordings on Monday, Swiss news agency ATS reported, amid a local political storm over the incident and Vogt's case.

Vogt had been kept in prison since 2001, well beyond the original 20-month sentence he was serving, because of repeat violent offences committed while in jail.

He was "considered extremely dangerous by experts," a spokesman for Vaud regional authorities said.

Date created : 2010-04-27

COMMENT(S)