Prison where rapists executed in swimming pool as jail has no guards or cells

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    A South American prison has been abandoned by guards and is now run by criminals who dish out their own justice.

    San Pedro Prison is the biggest in Bolivia’s main city, La Paz and holds approximately 3,000 dangerous inmates.

    In some cases, the criminal's families also live inside the prison, as it is rumoured their partners and children are safer inside than on the streets.

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    Those inside the prison are largely left to their own devices and have developed their own ‘council’ who make the rules – including dishing out their own punishments.

    In 2013 it was reported that a 12-year-old girl fell pregnant to a group of men inside the prison.

    Rapists and child molesters are allegedly treated with a brutal zero-tolerance policy – with stabbing being the most common punishment.

    According to author Rusty Young, when a sex offender arrives in the prison, a lynch mob forms and carries him through the corridor.

    The offender can be electrocuted, stabbed or beaten to death.

    However, the jail also has a terrifying swimming pool which has been used in several executions where inmates band together to drowning offenders.

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    Young bribed his way into the jail and lived there for four months before publishing his book ‘Marching Powder’ which followed the story of inmate Thomas McFadden – a small-time English drug smuggler.

    It also lifted the lid on the drug trafficking that runs rampant inside San Pedro.

    McFadden ended up making a living by giving backpackers tours of the prison, however, these were eventually banned when it emerged tourists were also buying cocaine at the 'prison factory'.

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    He explained that inmates buy or rent their cells – with each one given a rating from zero to 5.5 stars.

    If an inmate can’t afford to buy a room they risk death as temperatures in the city drop dangerously low due to its location.

    Despite looking like any other jail from the outside, the inside is drastically different with barbershops, restaurants, classrooms, churches, and several small businesses inside.

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    There are no guards or metal bars on the cell windows and inmates have to pay for their own cells by working inside the jail.

    Available jobs include carpentry, laundry services and even shoe-shining.

    There are rumours sex workers also enter the prison, bribing the guards to slip in.

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