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Criminals at large in China urged to turn themselves in

(Xinhua)

16:56, September 28, 2011

BEIJING, Sept. 28, (Xinhua) -- China's public security authorities are urging criminals at large to surrender themselves to police before Dec. 1, as they may receive commuted sentences for doing so, according to an official circular released this week.

Criminals who confess their crimes through an intermediary or are turned in by their relatives may receive commuted sentences after being taken into custody and tried, said the circular jointly released by the Supreme People's Court, the Supreme People's Procuratorate, the Ministry of the Public Security (MPS) and the Ministry of Justice.

Misdemeanor charges will be dropped for those who turn themselves in before the deadline, according to the circular.

The policy will also apply to suspects who voluntarily confess to crimes that were not uncovered during routine interrogations, according to an official from the MPS on Wednesday.

Sentences may also be reduced for criminals who turn themselves in if they expose crimes committed by others or provide clues that lead to the arrest of other criminals, the official said.

However, criminals who fail to surrender by Dec. 1 will face harsher punishments if they are caught later, according to the MPS official. People who are found to be protecting criminals, committing perjury or perpetrating acts of revenge against whistleblowers and prosecutors may also receive additional punishment, the official said.

The circular will be widely circulated through media outlets across the country in October, the official said.

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