Death row in­mates to get free le­gal aid

China Daily (Canada) - - NEWS CAPSULE -

Con­victed crim­i­nals on death row will be en­ti­tled to free le­gal rep­re­sen­ta­tion un­der a new rule drafted by the Min­istry of Jus­tice, a min­istry source told China Daily.

The min­istry will as­sign lawyers to con­demned pris­on­ers who can­not af­ford one dur­ing the re­view of their sen­tences to en­sure equal ac­cess to jus­tice, ac­cord­ing to the source.

The source said of­fi­cials from the min­istry and the high court are “fi­nal­iz­ing some de­tailed im­ple­men­ta­tion mea­sures and the rule will be re­leased in the next few months”.

The source asked not to be iden­ti­fied be­cause she was not au­tho­rized to dis­cuss the draft plan with the media.

Un­der Chi­nese law, all death sen­tences must be re­viewed by the Supreme Peo­ple’s Court be­fore de­fen­dants can be ex­e­cuted.

The price for Ti­betan mas­tiffs paid by the rich in 2008 went as high as 5 mil­lion yuan ($793,650) to 10 mil­lion yuan. But with China’s slow­ing econ­omy, the bot­tom has fallen out of the mar­ket for the an­i­mal. Now a pure-bred Ti­betan mas­tiff should cost around 1 mil­lion yuan, says a breeder.

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