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Interpretation on the Application of the Criminal Procedure Law of the People's Republic of China (2021)

Fri, 25 Jun 2021
Categories: Insights

Interpretation on the Application of the Criminal Procedure Law of the People’s Republic of China was promulgated in 2012, and amended in 2012 and 2021 respectively. The latest revision entered into force on 1 Mar. 2021.

There are 655 articles in total. The Interpretation aims to ensure the implementation of the Criminal Procedure Law and realize the unity of punishing crimes and safeguarding human rights.

Key points of the Interpretation are as follows:

  1. Where a defendant neither entrusts a defender, nor a legal aid agency designates a lawyer to defend him/her, the people’s court shall inform the defendant of his/her right to meet with a duty lawyer and facilitate such appointment.
  2. When handling juvenile criminal cases, the people’s court shall apply the policy of education, reformation and redemption, adhere to the principle of education first with punishment as a supporting approach, and strengthen special protection for minors. At the same time, the people’s court shall strengthen cooperation with relevant departments and take necessary protective measures such as psychological intervention, financial assistance, legal aid and transfer to other schools for juvenile victims of sexual assault or violence and their families.
  3. For embezzlement and bribery cases or cases regarding crimes seriously endangering State security or involving terrorist activities identified by the Supreme People’s Procuratorate that requires prompt trial, where the criminal suspects or defendants have been abroad, the procedures for trials in absentia may apply. Foreign requests for judicial assistance from a Chinese court shall be made in accordance with the provisions of the treaty on judicial assistance in criminal matters; if there is no treaty or the treaty does not provide for it, the relevant information required by the laws of China shall be stated, with the relevant materials attached. The written request and the attached materials shall be accompanied by a Chinese translation.



Cover Photo by 五玄土 ORIENTO ( on Unsplash

Contributors: CJO Staff Contributors Team

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