El Salvador opens mega-prison for gang members, transfers in first 2,000

By Jen Krausz on
 February 26, 2023

El Salvador has opened its newest mega-prison, which can hold 40,000 prisoners, and recently transferred 2,000 gang members there.

The newest detainees include MS-13 and Barrio-18 members who have been convicted of crimes in that country.

"Today at dawn, in a single operation, we transferred the first 2,000 gang members to the Center for the Confinement of Terrorism (CECOT)," El Salvador's President Nayib Bukele tweeted. "This will be their new home, where they won't be able to do any more harm to the population."

The new prisoners were shown on video shackled at the ankles and with hands behind their backs, running into the prison.

Many of them had shaved heads and gang tattoos.

The prison singlehandedly doubled El Salvador's prison capacity for the entire country.