The sexual abuse of federal inmates by U.S. Bureau of Prisons personnel is a significant problem, and the laws that criminalize sex inside America’s prisons are deficient, says a Justice Department’s Office of Inspector General report cited by the Washington Times. An investigation found that accusations involving the sexual abuse of inmates by personnel accounted for 90 new cases each year.
The report quoted former federal prison director Kathleen Sawyer as saying that sexual abuse of inmates was the biggest problem she faced. Inspector General Glenn Fine said, “Sexual abuse of inmates can corrupt staff members, lead to the introduction of contraband, and expose the [prison bureau] and staff to civil and criminal liability. Staff sexual abuse of inmates also undermines rehabilitation efforts and increases the difficulty of inmates successfully re-entering society.” The problem involves all gender combinations, not just male staff and female inmates.