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Wackenhut

The Wackenhut Corporation is a US-based multinational corporation, headquartered in Palm Beach Gardens, Florida, which runs state prisons in various parts of the United States, Australia, Canada, and Great Britain. Wackenhut is a publicly traded company, listed on the New York Stock Exchange.

Wackenhut owns 50% of the stock for Premier, another prison corporation (1-p.118). Wackenhut is a division of Group 4 Falck A/S and employs 40,000 people.

The group was criticized following the 1999 stabbing of New Mexico guard Ralph Garcia; during that year, there were 5 murders within Wackenhut's two New Mexico prisons. Critics argued that Wackenhut decreased prison security, by as much as 75%, in order to increase profits. Wackenhut has also been criticized (and praised) for permitting abusive behavior, by guards, against inmates. Wackenhut has been further criticized by state officials who argue that Wackenhut fails to provide the services it offers, thus forcing the state to pick up the tab. For example, New Mexico maintained a extra police in order to combat the relatively high-level of prison riots which occur in Wackenhut prisons.

In 1999, Texas terminated a prison contract with Wackenhut after allegations of staff sexually abusing prisoners. Also in 1999, Florida terminated a prison contract with the corporation.

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