Give Full Play to the Criminal Trial Function and Promote More Achievements in the Drug Control Work of the People's Courts in the New Era

——Interview with Li Shaoping, Vice President of the Supreme People's Court

  Our reporter Sun Hang

  Drugs are the nuisance of human society, which not only seriously infringes on the human body and will, destroys the happiness of the family, but also seriously consumes social wealth and poisons the social atmosphere. At present, drug abuse and drug crime are more prominent social problems in my country. Criminal trial is an important link in punishing drug crimes. Analyzing the situation and characteristics of drug crimes from the perspective of trial work, and proposing corresponding countermeasures and measures are of great significance for further strengthening the drug control work of the people's courts.

  On the eve of the "June 26" International Drug Control Day in 2020, Li Shaoping, vice president of the Supreme People's Court and deputy director of the National Drug Control Commission, accepted an exclusive interview with our reporter, analyzing the situation and characteristics of drug crimes since 2015 from the perspective of trial work, reviewing It summarizes the situation of the people’s courts fully exerting their criminal trial functions and actively participating in drug control work, especially the effectiveness of drug crime trials and judicial standardization, and introduces measures to further improve the people’s court drug control work.

  Talk about the current situation and characteristics of drug crimes: the number of drug crime cases has declined in recent years, but the situation of drug control is still grim and complicated

  Question: The drug problem is a major social problem. It is understood that my country’s drug crime situation has improved in recent years. Could you please introduce in detail the current drug crime situation in my country and what are its characteristics?

  Answer: The anti-drug work is related to national security, national prosperity and decline, and people's well-being. Since the 18th National Congress of the Communist Party of China, General Secretary Xi Jinping has made important instructions and delivered important speeches on drug control on many occasions. He has scientifically clarified the major theoretical and practical issues of drug control from a global and strategic perspective, and proposed to do a good job in drug control under the new situation. The new concept, new ideas, and new strategies are the scientific guide and program of action for the fight against drugs in the new era, and provide a fundamental basis for further strengthening and improving the anti-drug work in the new era. It is of great and far-reaching significance to study and comprehend and implement General Secretary Xi Jinping's series of important instructions and the spirit of important speeches to further promote the development and progress of my country's drug control cause. In July 2018, the Supreme People's Court issued a notice specifically requesting national courts to thoroughly implement the spirit of General Secretary Jin Ping's important instructions on drug control work, and promote a new situation in the people's court's drug control work in the new era.

  Under the high attention and correct leadership of the Party Central Committee, in recent years, the relevant departments of various regions have worked together to further promote the anti-drug people’s war, and China’s anti-drug work has achieved staged results, effectively curbing the momentum of the rapid development and spread of the drug problem, and effectively reversed it. In some places where the drug problem is serious, the anti-drug situation is showing positive changes that are improving overall and continuing to improve. The number of drug crime cases tried by the People's Court reached the highest point in history in 2015. The number of first-instance cases closed was 139,000, which began to fall in 2016 and fell to 85,800 in 2019, a decrease of 38.27% compared with 2015.

  While fully affirming the achievements, we must also be soberly aware that due to the double influence of the international drug boom and domestic drug-related factors, the current situation of my country's drug fight is still grim and complicated. First, the penetration of foreign drug sources such as the "Golden Triangle", "Golden Crescent" and South America has intensified into my country, and drug smuggling and entry crimes in border areas and coastal areas such as Yunnan, Guangdong and Guangxi remain high. The second is that domestic manufacturing of methamphetamine, ketamine and other synthetic drug crimes is more prominent. It has spread to other provinces from Guangdong, Sichuan and other provinces. At present, most of the provinces in the country have discovered drug-making activities. Affected by this, the situation in which ephedrine, hydroxyimine, o-chlorophenylcyclopentanone (ortho-ketone for short) and other drug-making products flow into illegal channels is also severe. The number of criminal cases involving the manufacture of drugs in the first instance of the national courts is increasing, with 288 in 2015 and 297 in 2019, and new raw materials and methods for making drugs are constantly emerging. The third is that the types of drugs involved are diversified, and crimes involving new psychoactive substances have increased. Methamphetamine (including methamphetamine and tablets) and heroin are still dominant, but in most areas methamphetamine has surpassed heroin as the most important drug. At the same time, new types of drug crimes are on the rise, and new drug-related crimes such as ketamine, mecasinone, tramadol, etc. have occurred from time to time. Crimes of manufacturing and selling new psychoactive substances such as synthetic cannabinoids have occurred in some places. The pattern of "has already appeared. Fourth, in terms of criminal methods, drug trafficking activities have become more scientific and intelligent, and the use of information networks such as QQ, WeChat, and forums to communicate and transact, as well as the use of logistics delivery channels for transportation of drug crimes have occurred from time to time and are more concealed. It is more difficult to crack down and supervise, and it has put forward many new challenges and requirements for drug control. In addition, the drug problem is often intertwined with issues such as "yellow, gambling, theft, robbery, and black", which induces a large number of illegal and criminal activities. In recent years, there have been many vicious cases of homicides, arson, driving collisions, etc. after drug abuse, which seriously endangered the lives and property of the people and the social harmony and stability. In general, the current number of drug crime cases is still at a high level, and the trial of drug crime cases is still an important task of the people's court's criminal trial work.

  Talking about the relationship between criminal trial and anti-drug work: insisting on punishing drug crimes strictly according to law, giving full play to the role of criminal deterrence and curbing drug crimes

  Question: Conviction and sentencing can intuitively reflect the punishment for drug crimes. In recent years, the People’s Courts have always adhered to the criminal policy of severely punishing drug crimes. What specific experiences and practices are there in this regard?

  Answer: Criminal trial is an important part of drug control work. Pursuing criminal responsibility according to law can achieve the effect of punishing and curbing drug crimes. In recent years, the People’s Court has conscientiously implemented the Party’s major policy decisions on drug control work, earnestly fulfilled its trial duties, and insisted on severely punishing drug crimes in accordance with the law, providing powerful judicial guarantees for comprehensive and in-depth drug control work.

  In terms of severe sentence rate, from 2015 to 2019, the average annual severe sentence rate of punishment for more than five years in prison in drug crime cases was 22.37%, and the severe sentence rate in each year was significantly higher than that of all criminal cases in the same period. . Among them, drug criminals with extremely serious crimes, extremely subjective viciousness, and sufficient evidence of crimes are resolutely sentenced to death. With regard to the key points of severe punishment, severely crack down on the manufacture of drugs, bulk smuggling, trafficking, transportation of drugs, large-scale illegal production, sale and purchase, transportation of drug-making substances, serious crimes caused by drug addicts and other serious drugs or drug-related crimes. In the past two years, the People’s Court has closely combined with the special fight against wickedness, and severely punished gangsters that manipulate and operate drug-related activities, and drug-trafficking gangs intertwined with gangsters, digging into gangsters and their “protective umbrellas” to promote drug control. The fight against evil in the field has achieved positive results. At the same time, drug lords, occupational drug offenders, recidivists, drug offenders, violent resistance to investigation, armed cover crimes, crimes involving the use of minors, crimes committed by state personnel, and other serious circumstances shall be severely punished according to law. In terms of economic sanctions, pay full attention to the characteristics of drug crimes as corrupt crimes, continue to summarize and improve related working mechanisms, increase economic sanctions against drug crimes, recover illegal gains according to law, use fines, confiscate property penalties and increase Enforcement efforts to ensure economic punishment of crimes and deprivation of conditions for recidivism.

  Of course, in the trial process, dialectical thinking and differential treatment should also be adhered to. Defendants who originally had lighter crimes, or had statutory, discretionary punishment circumstances such as accomplices, surrender, meritorious service, truthful confessions, and incidental offenders should be given according to law. The punishment should be lenient so as to differentiate and disintegrate drug criminals, and prevent and reduce drug crimes. In practice, some drug crime cases that embody lenient punishment according to law have achieved good results.

  Talking about the standardization of anti-drug justice in the People’s Court in recent years: the formulation of important judicial normative documents such as drug crime judicial interpretations and meeting minutes has formed a relatively complete anti-drug judicial rule system

  Question: Drug crime trial work is very professional, and the formulation of regulatory documents such as judicial interpretations is of great significance for the accurate application of laws and ensuring fair justice. Could you please give us a detailed introduction of the work achieved by the Supreme People's Court in this regard in recent years?

  Answer: It is an important function undertaken by the Supreme People's Court to carry out trial guidance and unify the applicable standards of law. In order to accurately apply the law and effectively punish drug crimes in accordance with the law, the Supreme People’s Court has carried out special investigations in recent years and formulated a number of regulatory documents such as judicial interpretations and meeting minutes in the field of drug control, which has formed a relatively complete judicial rule system. For example, in 2015, the "Minutes of the National Court's Drug Crime Trial Work Symposium" (ie, "Wuhan Conference Minutes") issued clear and specific requirements for the in-depth implementation of the Central Drug Control Decision-Making and the further strengthening of the people's court's drug control work; at the same time, It regulates the outstanding application of law in seven aspects including the identification of crimes, the determination of joint crimes, the determination of the quantity of drugs, and the application of penalties in drug crime trials. This document is another important achievement of the Supreme People's Court in the guidance of drug crime trials following the issuance of the "Minutes of the Working Conference on the Trial of Drug Crime Cases in Some National Courts" (ie "Dalian Conference Minutes") in 2008. The important normative documents guiding drug crime trial work during the period.

  Another example is the “Interpretation of Several Issues Concerning the Applicable Laws in the Trial of Drug Crime Cases” issued in 2016, which systematically stipulates the quantitative standards for the conviction and sentencing of 28 kinds of drugs. Regulations on the application of laws such as drug crimes and violent resistance to serious investigations are determined. The judicial interpretation and the aforementioned minutes of the meeting have played an important role in correctly applying the law and punishing drug crimes in accordance with the law.

  In particular, it is necessary to introduce that drug crimes are more concealed, and handling drug crime cases has certain specialities in evidence collection and review. In the trial work, we must pay attention to this particularity, and also implement the reform of the criminal procedural centering on trial. Requirements to ensure the quality of evidence in the case. To this end, in recent years, the Supreme People’s Court has conducted in-depth investigations and demonstrations, and in conjunction with the Supreme People’s Procuratorate and the Ministry of Public Security have made significant progress in standardizing and improving the quality of evidence in drug crime cases, jointly formulated the "Drug Extraction, Detention, Weighing for Drug Crime Cases". , Sampling and Provisions for Several Issues in Inspection Procedures" and other documents, and established and improved some new working mechanisms. According to these working mechanisms, in handling drug crime cases, we must continue to unswervingly adhere to the guiding ideology of severely punishing drug crimes according to law, and in accordance with the requirements of the trial-centered reform of the criminal litigation system, effectively implement the principles of evidence judgment, and comprehensively and legally follow the law. Collect and extract various types of evidence that affect conviction and sentencing; we must further improve the rules of evidence review and determination, improve the ability of judicial personnel to review and use evidence, especially give full play to the guidance and promotion of court trial in the investigation and review of prosecution, and ensure that the factual evidence of the case is Conduct legal inspections to ensure that criminals are punished appropriately.

  On fulfilling the duties of member units of the Anti-Drug Committee: conscientiously implement the deployment of the National Anti-Drug Committee, do a good job in supervision and inspection, special research and other related work

  Question: The Supreme People's Court is a member unit of the National Drug Control Commission. You are also the deputy director of the National Drug Control Commission. Could you please tell us what the Supreme People's Court has done in fulfilling its duties as a member unit of the Drug Control Commission?

  Answer: Anti-drug is a complex systematic project, which requires all functional departments to work together to co-operate, work together, and form synergy. As a member unit of the National Anti-Drug Committee, the Supreme People's Court has seriously implemented various work arrangements of the National Anti-Drug Committee in recent years, and participated in the special work of the anti-narcotics investigation intelligence, control of precursor chemicals and drug-related anti-money laundering. As a member unit of the anti-drug committee at the same level, the courts in various places have performed their responsibilities seriously and have done a lot of solid and effective work. Specifically, it mainly includes the following aspects:

  First, actively participate in special actions. During the deployment of the National Drug Control Commission and relevant functional departments to carry out special operations such as the "Hundred Cities Anti-Drug Battle", online anti-drug, anti-drug crimes, "two fights and two controls" and "clean edge", courts in various regions actively cooperated and concentrated their efforts on acceptance The drug crime cases were tried in time, and the severe sentence and even the death penalty were sentenced according to law, which effectively deterred criminals.

  The second is to seriously carry out supervision and inspection. Supervision and inspection is a new way of anti-drug work, and plays an important role in promoting the further implementation of the anti-drug work responsibility system. Since the National Drug Control Commission deployed this work in 2014, the Supreme People's Court has actively cooperated. I have led teams to Shanxi, Hunan, Guangxi, Fujian, and Hainan to conduct supervision and inspection, to understand the situation at the grass-roots level, find problems, and study countermeasures. In areas with serious drug problems that have been included in the key rectification by the National Narcotics Control Commission, local courts have actively cooperated with rectification and strengthened the drug situation by strengthening trials, conducting legal education, and participating in assistance and guidance.

  The third is to earnestly carry out special investigations. In recent years, new situations and new problems have emerged in the field of anti-drug justice. Relevant departments of the Supreme People’s Court have applied laws on chloroephedrine-related crimes, synthetic cannabinoid-related crimes, and drug-related property recovery in response to the requirements of the National Drug Control Office. In-depth study of the problem and the provision of guiding opinions have better solved the urgent needs of judicial practice.

  Fourth, strengthen basic theoretical research. In 2017, the relevant departments of the Supreme People's Court and the State Drug Control Office cooperated with Southwest University of Political Science and Law and Wuhan University to establish the National Drug Problem Governance Research Center and Drug Crime Justice Research Center. The two centers have carried out a series of research, seminars, training and other work, which provide strong theoretical support for improving the anti-drug criminal policy and improving the level of anti-drug criminal justice work.

  Fifth, improve communication and coordination mechanisms. The Supreme People's Court, the Supreme People's Procuratorate, the Ministry of Public Security and other anti-drug functional departments have focused on strengthening communication and cooperation, and have established a long-term cooperation mechanism in the anti-drug legal system construction, information exchange, and business exchange. Local people's courts at all levels have included anti-drug work in their overall work plans, formulated work plans, implemented them well, and strengthened coordination and cooperation with other anti-drug functional departments at the same level, and achieved good results.

  Talk about the effectiveness of participating in the comprehensive anti-drug management work: make full use of the advantages of trial resources, take multiple measures, and do a good job in comprehensive anti-drug publicity work

  Question: The causes of the drug problem are complex, and it is necessary to vigorously carry out comprehensive governance. What has the People's Court achieved in recent years in participating in the comprehensive governance of drug control?

  A: At present, the number of drug users in my country is still relatively large, and there are many hidden drug users. If the number of drug users cannot be effectively reduced and the demand for drugs is reduced, the effect of penalties to curb drug crimes will inevitably be affected. Therefore, we must combine the containment of drug crimes and the problem of drug abuse control, insist on reducing both demand and supply, and adopt economic, social, cultural, legal, administrative and other diversified methods to systematically and comprehensively manage the drug problem. From the source, Fundamentally reduce drug crime. In recent years, while doing a good job in the trial of drug crimes, the people’s courts have made full use of the advantages of trial resources to actively participate in the comprehensive management of drug control, and have achieved some results.

  From 2015 to 2019, the Supreme People's Court issued a total of 5 batches of 43 typical cases of drug (drug-related) crimes, and this year will also release 10 typical cases during the International Drug Control Day. These cases reflect the people's court's strict punishment position on drug crimes from different angles, and also reflect the situation and some characteristics of drug crimes in recent years. It is particularly worth mentioning that in 2017, the Supreme People’s Court issued the “White Paper on Anti-drug Work of the People’s Court (2012-2017)” for the first time, informing the society of the main measures and results of the people’s court’s anti-drug work since the 18th National Congress of the Communist Party of China. Propaganda effect.

  In order to form an overall momentum for the nationwide courts to carry out anti-drug propaganda simultaneously, the Supreme People’s Court has coordinated with local courts in Yunnan and Guangdong on many occasions, and vigorously carried out in various forms such as holding press conferences, publishing typical cases, public hearings, and centralized pronouncements. Anti-drug propaganda. People’s courts in areas where drug crimes are common have established and perfected a working mechanism for actively conducting anti-drug propaganda.

  In addition, proposing judicial advice is an important way for people's courts to extend the trial function and promote the improvement of the social governance system. In recent years, many local courts have made suggestions to the relevant functional departments to strengthen source governance and strengthen daily management and control in response to hidden dangers and social management loopholes found in drug crime trials, which has promoted the improvement of the anti-drug prevention and control system.

  Talk about the people's court's next anti-drug work measures: focus on drug crime trial work, be realistic and innovative, and promote the new era of people's courts' anti-drug work to achieve new results

  Question: Drug crime trials and other anti-drug work are important tasks that the People’s Court has long undertaken. What are the next steps to advance this work?

  A: In the first half of this year, due to the impact of the New Coronary Pneumonia epidemic, the number of drug crime cases tried by courts across the country has generally declined. The decline in many places is very obvious, but this is not the norm. It is expected that there will be a certain rebound after social life is fully restored. The current anti-drug situation in my country is still grim and complex. Compared with the requirements of the situation, there are still some weak links in the anti-drug work of the people's courts. For example, some courts in areas with more serious drug situations have not paid enough attention to drug crime trial work, and have not put this work under the overall planning of the national drug control cause; some courts do not focus on summarizing and analyzing local Due to the characteristics of drug crimes, there is insufficient research on the emerging issues of law application; some courts have implemented a single anti-drug comprehensive treatment measures in a single way, and the anti-drug publicity and education efforts are not strong. The above-mentioned problems need to be taken practical measures from various aspects, targeted to be resolved, and strive to achieve new results in the new era of people's courts' anti-drug work.

  First, people's courts at all levels should continue to study and implement the spirit of the series of important instructions of General Secretary Xi Jinping on drug control work and the central drug control decision-making and deployment, to further enhance the understanding of the importance of drug control work, and focus on the national drug control work in the local party committee Under the leadership of the CPC and the overall arrangement of the Drug Control Commission, strictly implement the drug control responsibility system, and do a good job in all drug control work centering on drug crime trials.

  Second, we must unswervingly continue to adhere to the guiding ideology of severely punishing drug crimes in accordance with the law and ensure the punishment of serious drug crimes. It is necessary to actively participate in the "clean edge" and other special actions organized by the National Narcotics Control Commission, strengthen communication and cooperation with relevant functional departments, give full play to the criminal trial function, and follow the requirements of trial-oriented reform of the criminal litigation system, and make the case facts and laws relevant And policy, to ensure that drug criminals receive timely and due punishment.

  The third is to continue to do a good job of research and guidance, and promote the improvement of anti-drug criminal legislation. We must conduct in-depth investigations, strengthen research, and propose practical solutions to the “old” problems that have not been effectively resolved in the long-term anti-drug work of some localities and the “new” problems in the application of laws in the drug-related field in recent years. Among them, for the need to develop guidance documents, it should be formulated in time; for issues related to legislation (such as improving the illegal income recovery mechanism, etc.), it is necessary to put forward mature legislative proposals after in-depth research. The drug crime trial work is highly professional. The people's courts in drug crime-prone areas should pay special attention to strengthening the specialization of drug control and adopt effective measures to improve the level of drug crime trial specialization.

  Fourth, the people’s court should continue to make full use of the advantages of trial resources, adhere to the combination of centralized propaganda and daily propaganda, and constantly innovate the carrier of anti-drug propaganda, highlighting vulnerable groups such as the unemployed, school dropouts, and the floating population, and focus on propagating drugs, especially synthetic The serious harm of drugs and the policy stance of the People's Court to punish drug crimes severely, alert the public, especially young people, to stay away from drugs, and strive to create a good social atmosphere in which the people consciously reject drugs and prevent drugs.