Ju­di­ciary reports on ef­fort to push re­form

China Daily (Canada) - - FRONT PAGE - ByBy CAOCAO YINYIN in Bei­jing caoyin@caoyin@chi­nadaily.chi­nadaily.com.com.cncn

China’s top ju­di­cial au­thor­i­ties pre­sented lon­gan­tic­i­pated reports on Wed­nes­day to national leg­is­la­tors on their progress in up­hold­ing the law and pre­vent­ing wrong­ful con­vic­tions in the wake of im­por­tant ju­di­cial re­forms in 2013.

The Supreme Peo­ple’s Court and Supreme Peo­ple’s Procu­ra­torate both sub­mit­ted reports to the bi­monthly ses­sion of the Stand­ing Com­mit­tee of the National Peo­ple’s Con­gress on Wed­nes­day.

The top court said it had over­turned 37 wrong­ful con­vic­tions since Novem­ber 2012, in­clud­ing in the high-pro­file case of Nie Shu­bin, who was ex­on­er­ated on Dec 2, 2016, more than two decades after he was wrongly ex­e­cuted for rape and mur­der.

“We’ve is­sued guide­lines in re­cent years to pre­vent wrong­ful cases, such as the one reg­u­lat­ing ev­i­dence re­views by courts, and we’ve or­dered courts not to con­vict de­fen­dants on in­suf­fi­cient ev­i­dence,” said Zhou Qiang, pres­i­dent of the top court. “The aim is to up­hold jus­tice and pro­tect hu­man rights.”

Thanks to th­ese ef­forts, courts ac­quit­ted 4,032 de­fen­dants in ac­cor­dance with the law be­tween 2013 and Septem­ber this year, the re­port said.

Courts have also been or­dered to strictly ex­clude ev­i­dence ob­tained il­le­gally, in­clud­ing ev­i­dence gained by tor­ture, “and not to force any­one to plead guilty”, Zhou said.

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