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Top Judge Says Chinese Courts' Functions Expanded
Chinese courts have begun to handle cases such as Internet-related crimes and disputes over intellectual property rights in new technology development and in the stock market over the past five years, said China's top judge Sunday.

Xiao Yang, president of China's Supreme People's Court, said that Chinese courts have been expanding their trial functions to meet the situation brought about by the development of the socialist market economy and China's accession to the World Trade Organization.

At a national conference on court work held every five years, Xiao said the new types of civil suits and intellectual property disputes are occurring more and more frequently in recent years.

The new civil suits consist mainly of computer- or Internet-related crimes, fraudulent statements at the stock market, competing registrations of domain names, and the use of fraudulent trademarks, while intellectual property disputes occur mainly in the development of software, biotechnology and new plants. There are also cases on anti-dumping and anti-subsidy, and disputes in telecommunications, postal and other fields.

In the five years ending November this year, Chinese courts handled 40.5 million cases, an increase of 31.14 percent from the previous five years, along with improvements in their judicial skills, Xiao said.

The courts will continue to mete out justice, improve efficiency, and promote judiciary reform to offer a more favorable social environment for the nation's endeavor to build a relatively affluent society in an all-round way, he said.

(Xinhua News Agency December 23, 2002)

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