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America’s Expensive Prisons

Does shrinking the size of prison populations save taxpayers money? Not always, says a study released May 23 by the Vera Institute of Justice. The study found that 25 states increased their spending on prisons even though the nation’s overall prison population has declined.

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Stop Fixating on Drugs, Colombian President Tells U.S.

Colombian President Juan Santos, who met President Trump at the White House last week, says the U.S. needs to change its hardline drug policy to focus on harm-reduction and the wider illicit activities conducted by transnational crime syndicates.

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Most States Still Deny Juveniles Access to Counsel: Report

A National Juvenile Defender Center report finds “large discrepancies” across the U.S. in the guidelines and procedures used to determine juveniles’ access to a lawyer. In the report, entitled, “Access Denied,” it calls on state authorities to “recognize interrogation as a critical stage of juvenile proceedings requiring a publicly funded defense lawyer to protect children from potential abuses of authority.”

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Insurance Firms ‘Corrupt’ U.S. Bail System: Report

In a special report, the ACLU and Color of Change say just nine insurers underwrite the majority of bonds issued in the U.S. Another report from Texas A&M University , which compares pretrial strategies in two Texas counties, says “automated risk-assessment” tools are fairer for defendants, cost less and improve public safety.

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