China says harm done by former security czar still felt by political and legal system

China says harm done by former security czar still felt by political and legal system

The annual central conference on political and legal work expressed the authority's determination on Wednesday to clean up the negative influence on the legal system from corrupt former security head Zhou Yongkang.

"Zhou, who blatantly traded power for money and sex, has caused severe harm to the Party and the people, left a bad influence within the system and led a number of officials astray," said Meng Jianzhu, head of the Communist Party of China Central Committee's Commission for Political and Legal Affairs.

He called Zhou's case "a grave lesson".

Some officials' legal and disciplinary violations are still having a bad effect on the political and legal system, Meng said, adding that it's because their ideals and beliefs went wrong and values were distorted.

Zhou Yongkang, former security czar of China, was expelled from the Party in December for serious violations of the Party's political, organizational and confidentiality rules, as well as suspected crimes.

Yi Shenghua, a criminal lawyer in Beijing appointed to clean up Zhou's adverse impact, said Zhou's moves in the judicial system have caused disorder over the past decade.

New assessment

Political and legal organisations will reconsider how they assess enforcement and administration, and will remove unreasonable indicators that can be misused - for example the rates of criminal detention, arrest, prosecution, conviction and claim settlement, Meng said.

The proposal drew support from the legal system, said Yi.

"The canceling of this unscientific indicator will effectively reduce wrongful cases," Yi said, explaining that a police station had been required to detain a certain number of people a month, which led to people being arrested for minor offences.

Dai Peng, director of the Criminal Investigation College at People's Public Security University of China, said that without the pressure caused by the conviction rate, police can take the time and energy they need to pursue an investigation, ensuring it is accurate and complete.

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