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People's Daily Online>>China Politics

Top judge: Courts need more reform

(Shanghai Daily)

16:34, March 12, 2012

Wang Shengjun(Photo from Shanghai Daily)

More reforms are needed to China's judicial system to overcome problems over transparency and corrupt judges, the country's top judge said yesterday.

In his annual report to the National People's Congress, Wang Shengjun, chief justice of the Supreme People's Court, said the court will work to create a better legal environment to protect economic and social development and deepen judicial reform.

"Some courts have not done well in improving transparency of court affairs and promoting a democratic judicial system," Wang said. He criticized some judges for working styles that delayed hearings, adding that a small number had taken bribes.

This year, efforts will be made to speed up civil cases involving small sums of money and to improve rules allowing citizens to observe trials, he said.

Wang said courts should make more effort in accepting supervision from the public, including soliciting public opinion and paying more heed to media reports.

Last year, 77 judges and court staff were prosecuted for embezzlement, bribery or other crimes connected to their work, 30 percent fewer than the year before.

Wang said the Supreme Court examined more than 11,800 cases in 2011, down 1.8 percent from the previous year. Local courts heard more than 12.2 million cases, up 4.4 percent.

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Jack Smith, USA at 2012-03-1224.26.135.*
Sounds real good. In the U.S., the courts are owned by the rich and are notoriously corrupt. U.S. judges at the state level are elected and thus must rely on campaign contributions made by the rich through lawyers prominent in that area. These lawyers then appear before those judges representing the rich and are naturally accorded special privileged treatment. The common citizen who cannot afford to hire lawyers so connected are at a severe disadvantage. The corrupt judges then hide their corruption behind a veil of complex legal reasoning designed to shelter the rich and which the common citizen cannot understand and which lawyers in the know are precluded from criticizing at the risk of their license to practice law. An example of twisting the law to the suit a desire outcome is the famous case of the murdered Chinese immigrant to the U.S. in the late 1800"s. The spoiled son of a prominent mining magnate in San Francisco got drunk and killed a poor Chinese immigrant for the fun of it. The father bribed the judge. At trial, the evidence showed the son guilty beyond all doubt. In reaching his decision, the judge noted that " the law clearly says that a man cannot kill another man". The father watched this in horror and rage, as he feared the judge was betraying his bribe. Then then judge said, "but that same law does not say that you cannot kill a China man" and found the spoiled son innocent. In ways large and small, and in different contexts, this is often the type of ludicrous and corrupt reasoning U.S. courts use to coddle the corrupt rich and deny the rights of average Americans. The public is beginning to sense what most American lawyers have known for a long time. In America, there is a thing called due process, but it"s the process that a corrupt elite sees fit to extend on its whim and bound by precious few real rules. Once again, China is showing up the U.S. in a big way. Please keep it up, for maybe you"ll be able to teach us something one day. Jack Smith, USA
  

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