East Germany Table of Contents
There are two distinct penal systems in the country. One, operated by the Ministry of the Interior, is for criminal offenses and accepts persons convicted and sentenced by the court system. Statistics on crime and prison populations are not published, and information on these subjects is scant and unreliable.
The penal institutions operated by the Ministry of State Security make up a second system. Little is known of them since they operate outside the jurisdiction of the legal system. Incarceration is for political, as opposed to criminal, offenses, and sentencing may be dealt with through ministry hearings rather than the judicial process.
The military legal system may impose military detention upon soldiers for minor infractions for periods from ten days to three months. This punishment is limited to males and does not constitute a conviction to be entered on criminal records.
Data as of July 1987