SCIO briefing on the work of procuratorial, judicial and public security authorities in the fight against the COVID-19 outbreak

The State Council Information Office held a press conference Wednesday morning in Beijing to introduce the efforts being made by the procuratorial, judicial and public security authorities to support the resumption of work and production in accordance with the law during the COVID-19 outbreak. February 27, 2020

Guangming Daily:

Many internet users are concerned about the procuratorial authorities not being able to provide either financial support or preferential policies for enterprises. As such, how can they work to support the resumption of work and production? Thank you. 

Chen Guoqing: 

The procuratorial authorities are supporting enterprises to resume work and production in accordance with the law. Based on procuratorial functions, we will fulfill our duties in the approval of arrests, prosecutions and litigation supervision, creating a sound legal environment for the resumption of work and production. The work will be carried out in the following aspects:

First, by performing duties on procuratorial work, the procuratorial authorities will severely crack down on crimes that jeopardize epidemic prevention and control, and punish illegal activities that hinder the resumption of work and production in accordance with the law. We will accurately observe the boundaries of laws and policies so as to establish a sound judicial environment for the resumption. In the crackdown on crimes that hinder the resumption, we will properly handle illegal acts and criminal cases, and correctly deal with the relationship between severe punishment and law-based handling of cases. As for companies suspected of committing crimes in production and business activities to promote the resumption of work and meet the needs of epidemic control during the outbreak, we will take into account the subjective intention of business operators, any harmful consequences and the circumstances of law violations, precisely determine the damage to society, and properly deal with the cases according to relevant laws.

Second, we will carry out the judicial concept of "fewer arrests and careful prosecution," including implementing enforcement measures cautiously. While fulfilling our procuratorial functions in cases related to enterprises, we will avoid compulsory measures such as restricting personal and property rights as far as possible. In principle, any property involved that may affect normal business operations will not be sealed up, seized or frozen. With regard to business operators who have voluntarily surrendered and made meritorious contributions, confessed or actively repented, and caused relatively minor social harm, compulsory measures of custody will in general not be taken. In the process of investigation, prosecution and trial of detained operators, we will examine the necessity of custody in a timely manner. In cases where the alternation of compulsory measures would have no impact on proceedings and detention is no longer necessary, we will alternate or recommend alternations of criminal compulsory measures in a timely manner. For example, since last year, the procuratorial authorities of Shenzhen have changed the compulsory measures from custody to the guarantor pending trial for 12 enterprise managers and technical management personnel related to seven companies, thereby enabling them to carry out normal production and operations. As for those who need to deal with urgent affairs in custody, we will, as far as possible, allow them to manage it in a proper way according to the specific situation of each case.

Third, we will give full play to the role of procuratorial authorities in legal supervision. We will carry out criminal procuratorial work conscientiously, including the filing of criminal cases, investigations and supervising adjudication. Meanwhile, we will advance procuratorial work in civil affairs, administration and public interest litigation, and perform procuratorial functions in accordance with the law to ensure the resumption of work and production. The procuratorial authorities must put forward corrective opinions according to the law on the sealing up, seizure and freezing of property involved in violation of the regulations. We will strengthen procuratorial supervision of civil enforcement actions related to epidemic prevention and control, propose immediate corrections to the illegal enforcement activities of relevant departments that affect the resumption of work and production and damage the legitimate rights and interests of enterprises and workers. For public interest litigation cases related to epidemic prevention and control, especially those involving producers and operators of important medical protection materials such as face masks and protective suits, we will pay equal attention to legal supervision and support for the resumption of work and production, actively extending our functions. Thank you.

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