The conditions in the prison colony where Russian oil tycoon Mikhail Khodorkovsky is serving his sentence have significantly improved, Denis Silonov, former prisoner of the colony who was recently discharged on parole, said in his interview published on the site of Khodorkovsky & Lebedev Communications Center.
As the former head of Yukos Oil Company was transferred to the colony in the town Segezhi, Karelia, all the cell blocks and other facilities were equipped with cameras. Now the colony employees cannot beat up prisoners and humiliate them as they used to do.
“Life has changed for the better. First of all, we started to live according to schedule. If earlier somebody could tell you something and beat you up somewhere in a corner, now nothing of this kind happens as there are cameras everywhere in the cell block. There are four cameras in cell block number 9, where Khodorkovsky is serving his sentence,” Silonov said.
He added that the cameras were installed not only in the cell block where Khodorkovsky lived but also in corridors, canteen block and other parts of the premises.
The former head of the now-defunct Yukos oil company was sentenced to 13 years in December on oil embezzlement and money laundering charges. The sentence included seven years that he had already served on earlier charges.
Khodorkovsky claims the charges against him were revenge for his funding of Russia's political opposition. The Kremlin has consistently denied the allegations.