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Danish 'date-an-inmate' site draws thousands

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Danish 'date-an-inmate' site draws thousands
Fancy a date? Renbæk's prisoners will woo you with a delicious meal or a behind-bars movie viewing. Photo: Renbæk prison
11:15 CET+01:00
“Date an Inmate”, a Facebook dating page where women can arrange behind-bars romance and even the occasional conjugal visit, has gained more than 10,000 members in the two weeks since it was set up.
In his profile, Patrick Charles Baagø, a handsome 25-year-old with spiky dark brown hair, says he’s on the look-out for a nice girl to whom he can play romantic songs on his guitar and hopefully spend his life with. 
 
But there's an obstacle in Baagø’s path to love: he’s is in the middle of serving a one-year sentence at Renbæk prison in southern Jutland. 
 
Realising this, Baagø and his fellow prisoner Kim Jensen Uth decided at the start of the year to set up “Date en Indsat”, or “Date an Inmate", on Facebook. 
 
Their success has been nothing short of phenomenal, with 10,377 members signing up to the closed group in just two weeks: proof, if proof were needed of the allure of prison romance. 
 
Looking at the site, it appears that interested women vastly outnumber sexually frustrated prisoners among the membership. 
 
"We are doing this, above all, to help other prisoners to find someone who can help them out of their criminal corner," Uth Jensen, who himself has a girlfriend and two children, told Germany's DPA. "This way, they (the criminals) have something that they can fight for."
 
Single prisoners who want to be featured on the page contact the site’s administrators, submitting an image long with a few lines about themselves and who and what they’re looking for. 
 
“Every day, we will upload a new picture of an inmate, whose single, which will later go into a folder where you can see all our “Prisoners of the Day”, Baagø and Uth Jensen explain.  
 
Copenhagen sexologist Tanja Glückstadt told Germany’s DPA news wire that there was no mystery as to why so many women were attracted to “rough diamonds” in prison. 
 
"If you're a bit bored of everyday life, this is a quick way to get a bit of excitement,” she says. “[People with a] dangerous image can be attractive." 
 
This was balanced, she added, with a sense of security which comes from the fact that the person they’re flirting with and dating is safely behind locked doors. 
 
Baagø told DPA he had been inundated with flattering comments under his profile, although he conceded the opportunities for dating, even in an open prison like Renbæk were restricted. 
 
"I could take a leisurely walk with her, or cook her something delicious," he said. "You can watch a movie with them, there are many opportunities in here."
 
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