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Family Life in Manila Jail

MANILA CITY JAIL, MANILA, PHILIPPINES - 2003/11/01: Veronica Delacruz with her husband Jaime and kids inside their cell barrack at Manila City Jail. Jaime is a member of Batang City Jail, one of 4 major gangs in Manila. He is accused of robbery and has been in the jail for 7 years waiting for a trial. His wife Veronica and their 6 kids joined him voluntarily 3 years ago and share his cell. The family has no relatives or any house in Manila. The kids are not allowed to play outside the barrack, except on Sundays. More than 400 inmates share the barrack. ( From left, Jaimie 34, with Jasmine 2, Jamie 6, Jovelle 10, Jaime 14, Jessica 8, Veronica Delcruz 30 and Juvilyn 12). Manila City Jail was built for 800 prisoners by the Spanish in the mid-nineteenth century, and with today's tally of over 5,000 inmates, it is long overdue. The last big riot was in 1999 when 7 people, including a child, died. Fights are still rampant, but the biggest killer is tuberculosis, followed by asthma. In 2002 alone, over 50 inmates succumbed to these respiratory tract diseases, which is a hard sentence, since all inmates are undertrials, waiting sometimes for 4-9 years due to a very slow judiciary court system. The jail is divided into different dorms, the biggest part is taken by Metro Manila's four gangs, Bahala gang (fearless), Sputnik, Commando and Batang City Jail, all with 400-800 members each. (Photo by Gerhard Joren/LightRocket via Getty Images)
Family Life in Manila Jail : News Photo
Family Life in Manila Jail : News Photo
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01 November, 2003
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