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Justice System In China - Research Paper Example

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Justice system in China “It is the spirit and not the form of law that keeps justice alive” Earl Warren Introduction: The key objective of any criminal justice system is to ensure protection of public interest through implementation of appropriate and effective laws and seek its strict adherence…
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Download file to see previous pages These changes have mostly been in response to the changes in the political, social and economic conditions of the respective nations as well as the philosophies followed by them. The developments taking place in the cultural and political spheres have played a key role in shaping and influencing the legal systems worldwide, and are apparent from the introduction of new laws over time. This paper on criminal justice aims to understand, assess and examine the criminal justice system in China, its historical and philosophical origins and the impact and influence of political and cultural elements in shaping the contemporary law in the country. Historical origins: China is regarded to be one of the few nations which boast of one of the oldest legal traditions in the world. However, according to studies, the country has faced several setbacks with regard to establishing and implementing an effective criminal justice system. China has seen a series of powerful dynasties, spanning over 4000 years of rich history, and witnessing the implementation of diverse systems of bureaucratic controls (Dammer & Albanese, 2010). Each and every single dynasty in ancient China had their own set of rules and laws comprising of criminal codes and statutes which were binding on all citizens. Some of the most prominent of these statutes include the Yuxing criminal laws established and implemented during the Xia Dynasty; the Tandxing criminal laws established during the Shang dynasty; the Qinlu criminal laws implemented during the Qing dynasty; the Hanlu laws during the Han dynasty; the Jiuxing criminal laws of the Zhou dynasty; the Tandxing criminal laws of the Shang dynasty; the Tanglu criminal laws of the Tang dynasty; among others. The criminal laws implemented by all these dynasties were governed by the administrative officials (Nwankwo, 2011). However with the change in political powers and the formation of new governance, which began with the establishment of China as the People’s Republic of China, during the year 1949; brought an abrupt end to the criminal laws observed for over 5000 years. When the Communist party assumed power in China, it set out to abolish all the old laws enacted by the previous governments, and replace it with new ones which were in sync with the universal laws and which complimented the new socialist regime (Nwankwo, 2011). The administration of the concept of justice in imperial China was founded on the basis of a set of values and theories. The conceptions of justice was largely influenced by three major schools of thoughts which included Confucianism, Legalism and cosmological. All the three schools of thoughts had a completely different approach although in principle, the philosophical justifications offered were the same. Eventually, the three schools of thoughts were finally merged together to form a common law based on a common rationale, during the Han dynasty between the period of 206 B.C. and 220 A.D. These set of laws continued to be put to practice till the twentieth century (Muhlhahn, 2009). Philosophical origins: “Lead the people with governmental measures and regulate them by law (fa) and punishment, and they will avoid wrongdoing but will have no sense of honor and shame. Lead them with virtue and regulate them by the roles of propriety (li), and they will have a sense of shame, and moreover, set themselves right.” Confucius, in Terrill (2009) pp. 556 During earlier times, the concept of equal ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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