Brazilian woman to celebrate 90th birthday behind bars in Tires jail

89-year-old Brazilian Rosa Vegele has been held at Lisbon’s Tires (women’s) jail since November last year. She is the country’s oldest prisoner and looks set to be celebrating her 90th birthday exactly where she is. Vegele is considered a flight risk, explain reports which add that she is accused of being the ‘front woman’ in an elaborate scheme to sell a Lisbon building that did not belong to her.

Vegele’s case has been discussed recently in the press – not because it is particularly interesting: it appears to be a fairly straightforward issue of fraud and document falsification, but because she is simply so old.

Diário de Notícias adds that while judges will take age into account when they reach a stage for sentencing, they find it “difficult to concede conditional liberty” to elderly prisoners who have completed two-thirds of their jail terms “because they have more inflexible mentalities and many of them do not internalise the blame of the crime/s they have committed”.

This leaves around over 380 OAPs thus behind bars in the country’s jails – in establishments not really equipped to deal with any kind of special geriatric needs, explains DN.

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