Crim­i­nal penal­ties de­signed to prompt de­fault­ers to com­ply

China Daily (USA) - - CHINA - By CAO YIN caoyin@chi­nadaily.com.cn

Peo­ple who refuse to com­ply with court ver­dicts will face harsher penal­ties and have nowhere to run, thanks to var­i­ous mea­sures made by China’s top court.

Chi­nese courts are try­ing to force de­fault­ers to com­ply with ver­dicts through the threat of crim­i­nal charges, “in a bid to quicken en­force­ment,” said Wu Shao­jun, deputy direc­tor of the en­force­ment department at the Supreme Peo­ple’s Court.

Wu said that the num­ber of de­fault­ers pe­nal­ized for re­fus­ing to com­ply with ver­dicts is rapidly in­creas­ing.

From Novem­ber 2014 to July this year, de­fault­ers in more than 2,500 cases have re­ceived penal­ties such as prison sen­tences or crim­i­nal de­ten­tion, ac­cord­ing to sta­tis­tics from the top court re­leased on Wed­nes­day.

A re­vised Chi­nese Crim­i­nal Law in­creased the sen­tence for de­fault­ers from three years to a max­i­mum of seven years, from Nov 1 last year, “which helps us to fight such cases”, Wu said.

Mean­while, a new ju­di­cial in­ter­pre­ta­tion is­sued by the top court in July last year has also con­trib­uted, he said.

“In the in­ter­pre­ta­tion, de­fault­ers in eight sit­u­a­tions, in­clud­ing hid­ing, de­stroy­ing or trans­fer­ring prop­er­ties with in­ten­tion, will be crim­i­nally pun­ished,” he said.

The quicker the money is re­turned to cred­i­tors, the bet­ter courts can main­tain jus­tice, he added.

In one case, the Daguan Dis­trict Peo­ple’s Court in An­qing, An­hui province, de­tained Zhang Wen­miao for five months and 10 days last year after he failed to move out of a house fol­low­ing a di­vorce with his wife in 2013, ac­cord­ing to Liu Huizhuo, a judge from the top court.

“Zhang was told sev­eral times to leave the house, as the court had awarded it to his wife. But the man ig­nored all the no­tices,” she said.

“Judges from the court had to go to the house to force him to take his be­long­ings and leave at the end of 2013, but he still re­sisted and shouted loudly at them,” she said.

“In Jan­uary 2014, when the judges ar­rived again, he hit them with wooden sticks, in­jur­ing one of them.” As his be­hav­ior was brought about by anx­i­ety over the di­vorce and be­cause he fi­nally moved out, “we pun­ished him le­niently”, she added.

In ad­di­tion, the top court in­tro­duced an on­line black­list of de­fault­ers in 2013 to en­cour­age them to com­ply by dis­clos­ing their names and case de­tails.

Sta­tis­tics pro­vided by the na­tion’s top ju­di­cial body also showed that be­tween 2013 and last year, courts con­cluded 9.44 mil­lion ver­dict-en­force­ment cases — a rise of more than 28 per­cent from 2010 to 2012 — and 3.2 tril­lion yuan ($464 bil­lion) was re­paid, an in­crease of 110 per­cent over the same pe­riod.

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