Chapter 6: Understanding wider problems with the Chinese criminal justice system through the lens of criminal reconciliation
This chapter analyses the problems with the wider criminal justice system that led to the specific problems with criminal reconciliation. First, legal rules are ignored, in part counteracted by internal regulations and in part supplanted by ‘hidden rules’ (qian guize) in practice, which, rather than showing the officials’ rampant power, reveal their weakness in facing the various external and internal pressures coming from, for example, the Political-Legal Committees (zhengfa wei), the Public Security Bureaus, People’s Congresses, local governments and the internal performance assessment systems. Second, the criminal process reflects an authoritarian approach to education aimed at thought reform. Third, evading the real problems leading to difficulty in enforcement (zhixing nan): the government fails to take sufficient responsibility for protecting the victims’ rights to get compensation in civil litigation collateral to criminal proceedings (xingshi fudai minshi susong).
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