Law of China

Adjudicatory system in China under Constitution

Superstructure

The People’s Republic of China is a socialist state governed by a people’s democratic dictatorship that is led by the working class and based on an alliance of workers and peasants.

The socialist system is the fundamental system of the People’s Republic of China. Leadership by the Communist Party of China is the defining feature of socialism with Chinese characteristics. It is prohibited for any organization or individual to damage the socialist system.

The organs through which the people exercise state power are the National People’s Congress[NCP] and the local people’s congresses at all levels. The NPC Standing Committee is composed of a chairperson, several vice-chairpersons, the secretary-general and other members. They are all elected by the NPC from its deputies for a five- year term, the same as the NPC term. The Standing Committee shall exercise its functions and powers until a new Standing Committee is elected by the succeeding NPC.

People’s Courts and People’s Procuratorates under Constitution

Article 128 The people’s courts of the People’s Republic of China are the adjudicatory organs of the state.

Article 129 The People’s Republic of China shall establish a Supreme People’s Court and local people’s courts at all levels, military courts and other special people’s courts.

The president of the Supreme People’s Court shall have the same term of office as that of the National People’s Congress and shall serve no more than two consecutive terms.

The organization of the people’s courts shall be prescribed by law.

Article 130 Except in special circumstances as prescribed by law, all cases in the people’s courts shall be tried in public. The accused shall have the right to defense.

Article 131 The people’s courts shall, in accordance with the provisions of law, independently exercise adjudicatory power, and shall not be subject to interference from any administrative organ, social organization or individual.

Article 132 The Supreme People’s Court is the highest adjudicatory organ.

The Supreme People’s Court shall oversee the adjudicatory work of local people’s courts at all levels and of special people’s courts; people’s courts at higher levels shall oversee the adjudicatory work of those at lower levels.

Article 133 The Supreme People’s Court shall be responsible to the National People’s Congress and the National People’s Congress Standing Committee. Local people’s courts at all levels shall be responsible to the state organs of power that created them.

Article 134 The people’s procuratorates of the People’s Republic of China are the legal oversight organs of the state.

Article 135 The People’s Republic of China shall establish a Supreme People’s Procuratorate, local people’s procuratorates at all levels, military procuratorates and other special people’s procuratorates.

The procurator general of the Supreme People’s Procuratorate shall have the same term of office as that of the National People’s Congress and shall serve no more than two consecutive terms.

The organization of the people’s procuratorates shall be prescribed by law.

Article 136 The people’s procuratorates shall, in accordance with the provisions of law, independently exercise procuratorial power, and shall not be subject to interference from any administrative organ, social organization or individual.

Article 137 The Supreme People’s Procuratorate is the highest procuratorial organ.

The Supreme People’s Procuratorate shall direct the work of local people’s procuratorates at all levels and of special people’s procuratorates; people’s procuratorates at higher levels shall direct the work of those at lower levels.

Article 138 The Supreme People’s Procuratorate shall be responsible to the National People’s Congress and the National People’s Congress Standing Committee. Local people’s procuratorates at all levels shall be responsible to the state organs of power that created them and to the people’s procuratorates at higher levels.

Article 139 Citizens of all ethnic groups shall have the right to use their own ethnic group’s spoken and written languages in court proceedings. The people’s courts and the people’s procuratorates should provide translation services for any party to court proceedings who does not have a good command of the spoken or written languages commonly used in the locality.

In areas inhabited by people of an ethnic minority or by a number of ethnic groups living together, court hearings should be conducted in the language or languages commonly used in the locality; indictments, judgments, notices and other documents should be written in the language or languages commonly used in the locality according to actual needs.

Article 140 In handling criminal cases, the people’s courts, the people’s procuratorates and public security organs should each be responsible for their respective tasks, work together with each other, and act as checks on each other to ensure the faithful and effective enforcement of the law.


December 4, 1982

Categories: Law of China

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