List of countries by incarceration rate
Incarceration totals and ratesEdit
The table source does not list an incarceration rate for the United Kingdom as a whole. In the list see United Kingdom: England & Wales, United Kingdom: Northern Ireland, United Kingdom: Scotland. A rate for the United Kingdom as a whole can be calculated by adding up the prison populations, and then dividing by the combined population of the UK.
For info on North Korea, see notes below. The World Prison Brief (WPB) may or may not incorporate juvenile incarceration numbers into the totals for each country. See the individual WPB country pages for more information.
- "Notes" column links to notes section below the chart.
- "c." (circa) indicates "approximately". Sorting will not work correctly if it is in front of the number. So it has been removed from Egypt, Honduras, Mauritania, and Namibia prison population numbers.
Remand. Pre-trial detainees. Percent of prison populationEdit
Remand (detention) as a percent of the total incarcerated population.
In addition to its standard prisons, Australia also operates a separate system of immigration prisons to detain foreigners who have breached the terms of, or lack a visa. Some of these immigration detention centres are used to indefinitely detain asylum seekers and refugees, including children, often without trial, sometimes for several years. Immigration detainees are not included in the data for prison population and incarceration rates.
Additionally, the number of prisoners and incarceration rate differs for each Australian state and territory, with some having much higher or lower incarceration rates than the national average.
According to the World Prison Brief, China had an incarceration rate of 118 per 100,000 as of mid-2015 (for 1,649,804 sentenced prisoners in Ministry of Justice prisons only). The World Prison Brief states that in addition to the sentenced prisoners, there may be more than 650,000 held in detention centers. "A total prison population of 2,300,000 would raise the incarceration rate to 164 per 100,000."
After 2015 there was a great increase in the number of people in the Xinjiang re-education camps. In May 2018, Randall Schriver of the United States Department of Defense claimed that "at least a million but likely closer to three million citizens" were imprisoned in detention centers in a strong condemnation of the "concentration camps". In August 2018, a United Nations human rights panel said that it had received many credible reports that 1 million ethnic Uyghurs in China have been held in "re-education camps".
In January 2020, a former high ranking judge in Cuba leaked secret Cuban government documents that showed the regime had the highest incarceration rate in the world at over 90,000 prisoners, with thousands in prison on dubious charges. Documents reviewed by the New York Times showed 92% of individuals tried in the country are found guilty. Nearly 4,000 every year are accused of being "antisocial" or "dangerous", which are terms used by the government to charge those that have committed no crime but are viewed by the regime as a risk to the status quo. Those charges have a 99.5% conviction rate. These individuals face summary trials with no right to a defense or to present evidence, according to the former judge. The documents show individuals being sentenced for several years in prison under the category of "anti-social", which can include actions like not belonging to state associated civic organizations or being unemployed. The crime "description" is often identical, appearing to be copy and pasted by police. The high incarceration rate in the secret documents is consistent with dissident group claims that the Cuban government's 2012 one-time release of inmate population numbers, when they reported 57,000 inmates, was false. 
According to Human Rights Watch, the Cuban government employs arbitrary detention to harass and intimidate regime critics, independent activists, political opponents, and others. Human Rights Watch's 2018 report noted "Cubans who criticize the government face the threat of criminal prosecution. They do not benefit from due process guarantees, such as the right to fair and public hearings by a competent and impartial tribunal. In some cases, detainees are released after receiving official warnings, which prosecutors can later use in subsequent criminal trials to show a pattern of “delinquent” behavior."
The prison population of India was 433,003 as of December 31, 2016, according to the World Prison Brief. According to the National Prison Portal website when viewed on 22 October 2019, the prison population of India is around 473,000.
Little information exists regarding North Korea's incarceration rate. In 2012, the U.S. Committee for Human Rights in North Korea estimated 150,000 to 200,000 are incarcerated, based on testimonies of defectors from the state police bureau, which roughly equals 600–800 people incarcerated per 100,000. For more information, see Prisons in North Korea.
The main chart source only provides rates for the constituent parts of the UK. In the above table see Scotland, Northern Ireland, and England and Wales. If they are not listed separately, then they can be found listed under the UK listing.
|Juveniles in residential|
placement, 1997–2015. US
The incarceration rate (per 100,000 population of all ages) is for inmates held in adult facilities in the United States. It does not include inmates in the custody of correctional facilities operated by departments of corrections in U.S. territories (American Samoa, Guam, and the U.S. Virgin Islands) and U.S. commonwealths (Northern Mariana Islands and Puerto Rico).
The incarceration rate in the U.S. varies greatly by U.S. state. See: List of U.S. states and territories by incarceration and correctional supervision rate.
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to |
- Highest to Lowest. World Prison Brief (WPB). Use dropdown menu to choose lists of countries by region, or the whole world. Use menu to select highest-to-lowest lists of prison population totals, prison population rates, percentage of pre-trial detainees / remand prisoners, percentage of female prisoners, percentage of foreign prisoners, and occupancy rate. Column headings in WPB tables can be clicked to reorder columns lowest to highest, or alphabetically. For detailed information for each country click on any country name in lists. See also the WPB main data page and click on the map links and/or the sidebar links to get to the region and country desired. Data for the whole Wikipedia list was last retrieved on 17 Feb 2020. Some numbers may be adjusted here later according to later info. Please update the table here only from this WPB source. For a quick method to fully update the table see the relevant section ("conversion examples") of Commons:Convert tables and charts to wiki code or image files.
- "Highest to Lowest - Prison Population Total | World Prison Brief". www.prisonstudies.org.
- "Population of Europe (2019) - Worldometers". www.worldometers.info.
- Australian Bureau of Statistics. "Main Features - Summary of findings". www.abs.gov.au.
- Sarah.Dillon, (8 November 2013). "Immigration detention and human rights". www.humanrights.gov.au.
- Doherty, Ben (17 May 2016). "Australia's indefinite detention of refugees illegal, UN rules". the Guardian.
- "All children to be off Nauru by year's end". The Sydney Morning Herald. 1 November 2018.
- Australian Bureau of Statistics. "Main Features - Summary of findings". www.abs.gov.au.
- "Youth detention population in Australia 2017, Summary - Australian Institute of Health and Welfare".
- China. By World Prison Brief.
- "US accuses China of using 'concentration camps' against Muslim minority". www.theguardian.com. 4 May 2018.
- "China putting minority Muslims in 'concentration camps,' U.S. says". www.reuters.com. 4 May 2018.
- "In Push for Trade Deal, Trump Administration Shelves Sanctions Over China's Crackdown on Uighurs". www.nytimes.com. 4 May 2018.
- "China Uighurs: One million held in political camps, UN told". BBC. Retrieved 10 August 2018.
- "U.N. says it has credible reports that China holds million Uighurs in secret camps". Reuters. Retrieved 10 August 2018.
- Robles, Frances (13 January 2020). "Ex-Judge Reveals Secrets Of How Cuba Suppresses Dissent". The New York Times.
- "Cuba says prison population at more than 57,000". BBC News. 23 May 2012.
- "Cuba. Events of 2018". Human Rights Watch.
- India. By World Prison Brief.
- "Welcome to National Prison Portal". eprisons.nic.in. Retrieved 2019-10-22.
- The Hidden Gulag: The Lives and Voices of "Those Who are Sent to the Mountains", 2nd ed. By David Hawk. Published April 10, 2012 by Committee for Human Rights in North Korea. ISBN 0615623670.
- Sickmund, M., Sladky, T.J., Kang, W., & Puzzanchera, C.. "Easy Access to the Census of Juveniles in Residential Placement". Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention. Click "National Crosstabs" at the top, and then choose the census years. Click "Show table" to get the total number of juvenile inmates for those years. Or go here for all the years. And here.
- United States of America. By World Prison Brief.
- Correctional Populations in the United States, 2016 (NCJ 251211). Published April 2018 by U.S. Bureau of Justice Statistics (BJS). By Danielle Kaeble and Mary Cowhig, BJS statisticians. See PDF. Appendix table 1 on page 11 has rates and counts by state. See page 1 "highlights" section for the "1 in ..." numbers. See table 4 on page 4 for a timeline of nationwide incarceration rates. See appendix table 3 on page 13, for "Persons held in custody in state or federal prisons or in local jails, 2000, 2010, and 2015–2016". That table also has incarceration rates. See appendix table 2 on page 12 for the number or persons incarcerated in territorial prisons, military facilities, and jails in Indian country.
- Core Publications of the World Prison Brief. Such as the World Prison Population List, and the World Female Imprisonment List.
- Persons Detained Statistics of incarceration ("detained") from the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime
- Prison population per capita. Edutube. World map. Move cursor over countries to see incarceration rates. Click the full-screen icon in the bottom-left of the map to launch it in a full-screen window. Then click anywhere on the map and use your mouse scroll wheel to zoom in or out. Drag the map to move it in any direction.
- Data Analysis Tools – Corrections Statistical Analysis Tool (CSAT) – Prisoners. United States Bureau of Justice Statistics.
- Number of inmates in Ukraine rises for first time in 7 years. 26 March 2009. Kyiv Post.
- Number of Imprisoned Russians Hits Historic Low, Prison Officials Say, 14 Dec 2018