Abu Hamza, the most high profile suspect in custody, is unlikely to be held in the prison known as “the Alcatraz of the Rockies” because of his disabilities.
However for those who are, the ADX Florence is one of the harshest jails in America, from which no one has ever escaped.
Described as a “cleaner version of hell” by its prison guards, inmates are in solitary confinement for 23 hours a day, only allowed out to visit the “empty swimming pool”, a miserable pit of an exercise room.
This bald blasted concrete room allows inmates to see the sky if they crane their neck 90 degrees, but otherwise is a depressed indoor pit.
Furniture in the institutionalised rooms are made out of poured concrete, and rarely are the prisoners allowed luxuries such as mirrors, televisions or radios. Left alone with their own thoughts, concerns have been raised for prisoners’ mental health whilst incarcerated.
However the European Court of Human Rights stated on Tuesday:
“The court finds that there are adequate opportunities for interaction between inmates. While inmates are in their cells talking to other inmates is possible, admittedly only through the ventilation system.
No inch of the cells affords a place to hide or smuggle any weapon. If the toilets are blocked, an alarm sounds, whilst showers last on timers. Meals are delivered direct to the rooms by prison guards, so there is no interaction afforded at meal times.
Fierce looking coils of razor wire are wrapped around the walls of the compound, which the Guinness Book of Records has labelled the “world’s most secure prison.” With nearly 1,500 remote-controlled steel doors, there are no keys to steal or locks to pick.
The fortress is home to many of the most notorious bombers and terrorists. Richard Reid, the shoe bomber is held in the ‘Alcatraz of the Rockies’, as well as Zacarias Mohammed, who helped plan the 9/11 attacks.
Take a virtual tour around the prison here.