China News Service, September 22. The Supreme People’s Procuratorate’s First Prosecutor’s Office Director Miao Shengming said on the 22nd that the application of the system of plea guilty and punished leniency does not mean that all leniency is applied. Criminal justice policies require severe penalties in accordance with the law and no leniency for cases that are particularly harmful and have particularly bad circumstances.

  On the morning of the 22nd, the State Council Information Office held a press conference on the contribution of procuratorial forces to building a well-off society in an all-round way.

At the meeting, a reporter asked: Since the implementation of the leniency system, the judicial efficiency has been improved to a certain extent.

However, some controversies have also arisen. Some people believe that the leniency system of confessing guilt and punishing will affect the requirements of “trial-centeredness” and the substantiveness of court trials, and may cause some innocent people to plead guilty and confess guilt against their will. This view is the highest prosecution. What's the comment?

In the next step, what are the considerations of the Supreme People's Procuratorate in improving the leniency system for confessing guilt and punishing?

  Miao Shengming responded that the system of plea guilty and punished leniency is a new litigation system with Chinese characteristics in the criminal justice system of our country's modern governance.

Since 2020, while procuratorial organs across the country have severely punished serious criminal offences in accordance with the law, this system has been applied to more than 85% of the cases. After the first instance, the appeal rate of the defendant’s appeal is only about 3.5%, which is lower than other criminal cases10 Many percentage points.

Moreover, the non-arrest rate in plea cases is also 20% higher than the overall non-arrest rate, and the court's probation is 7% higher than the overall criminal case.

It should be said that this is some new changes brought about by this system.

  Miao Shengming specifically stated that the application of the leniency system for confessing guilt and punishing is not all leniency or blind leniency, but the comprehensive implementation of the criminal justice policy of “combining leniency and strictness”. For cases with particularly serious harm and particularly bad circumstances, it must be followed in accordance with the law. Severe punishment, no leniency.

During the crackdown on gangsters, there was a criminal underworld case in Beijing. Lin Guobin and others specifically targeted the elderly’s houses and implemented routine loans, and successively defrauded 72 elderly people of 180 million yuan in housing payments. In this case, Lin Guobin acted The first offender pleaded guilty and punished in court, but the procuratorial organ still insisted that such a crime with particularly serious harm and serious circumstances should not be lenient and dealt with strictly in accordance with the law.

  Regarding the relationship between confessing guilt and punishing and "centering on trial", Miao Shengming believes that there is no conflict between the two, on the contrary, they are in the same line, complement each other and promote each other.

For the overall criminal litigation, it has a positive role in promoting.

  "We can look at this problem from two aspects." Miao Shengming said that on the one hand, because the system of plea guilty and punished leniency can effectively reduce the difficulty of proving a crime, but it is by no means lowering the standard of proof.

The “trial-centered” requirement is to improve the quality of investigation and evidence collection and review and prosecution. This is the basis and prerequisite for the effective exercise of the leniency system of confession and punishment.

Since the implementation of the system, we have pleaded guilty to more than 5,000 criminal suspects during the investigation stage, but after review, we found that the evidence was insufficient and could not be determined to constitute a crime, and we decided not to prosecute in accordance with the law.

On the other hand, the full application of the leniency system for confessing guilt and punishing can also create conditions for the “diversion of complicated and simple cases, separation of speed and slowness, quick trial of simple cases, and intensive trial of complicated cases”.

Practice now shows that about 90% of the cases are simple cases of confession, while the remaining less than 10% are complicated cases, which are not guilty or difficult and complicated cases.

Because of the application of the leniency system for confessing guilt and punishing, judges can have more energy to examine and examine major, difficult and complicated cases, and cases of non-guilty plea, which can greatly promote the substantive level of court trials required by the trial center.

So the relationship between the two is such a benign interaction.

By the 26th of next month, the three-year anniversary of the legal establishment of the guilty pleas and punishment system will be completed. It should be said that this is also an important time point for the future.

  Miao Shengming said that in the next step, the procuratorial agency will further strengthen cooperation with other political and legal agencies, focusing on improving the implementation rules, deepening the application of the system, and improving the quality and efficiency of case handling, and focus on the following tasks:

  The first is to improve the voluntary and authenticity guarantee mechanism of confessing guilt and punishment.

Improve the negotiation mechanism for prosecution and defense.

In the near future, we plan to introduce the People's Procuratorate's provision for simultaneous audio and video recording of prosecution and defense consultations in cases of confession and punishment.

  The second is to strengthen the standardization of sentencing recommendations.

In the near future, we are also preparing to issue guidelines for sentencing recommendations by the People's Procuratorate to enhance the sentencing capabilities of prosecutors.

  The third is to strengthen the supervision and management of prosecutors' handling of confessed guilt and punished cases.

Strengthen the implementation of the People’s Procuratorate’s supervision and management of confessing guilt and punishing cases promulgated last year to ensure that our procuratorial power can be exercised correctly and cleanly.

  The fourth is to strengthen the theoretical research and practical summary of the leniency system for confession of guilt and punishment, and strengthen the theoretical guidance for the operation of the system.

  In addition, Tong Jianming, deputy chief procurator in charge of daily work of the Supreme People’s Procuratorate, added that this year’s political and legal teams are being educated and rectified. There are two aspects. One is to increase supervision and how to give full play to the function of procuratorial organs as national legal supervision organs to promote strict and fair justice. Another aspect is how to regulate and restrict the exercise of procuratorial power, especially the exercise of discretionary power of prosecutors. The leniency system of guilty pleas and punishment has expanded the discretion of prosecutors to a certain extent, because the current rate of application is about 85%, and about 90% of them have to make definite sentencing recommendations, which can be confirmed by the judge’s approval. The discretionary power is expanded compared to the past. How to ensure that this discretionary power can be subject to strict regulations and constraints is also the next step to be strengthened. Therefore, it is necessary to standardize the operation of procuratorial power and the discretion of prosecutors by synchronizing audio and video recordings and strengthening consultations with lawyers.

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