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Procuratorate Provisions on Open Case Handling Information (Provisional)


People's Procuratorate Provisions on Open Case Information (Provisional)

(Adopted by the 24th session of the 12th Supreme People's Procuratorate's Procuratorate Committee on June 20, 2014)

Chapter I:General Provisions

Article 1: These Provisions are formulated on the basis of relevant legal provisions so as to ensure the masses' rights to know, participate in and supervise pocurator's work; so as to further openness in procurators' work, increase transparency in procurators' case handling and law enforcement, standardize judicial case handling conduct, and promote just law enforcement.

Article 2: People's protectorates case information disclosures shall follow the principles of legality, conveniencing the people, promptness, standardization and safety.

Article 3: The people's procuratorates shall use the internet, telephone, mail, procuratorate service windows and other means to provide procedural information query services to relevant persons, and to disclose important case information and legal documents to the people, as well as handling other case information openness efforts.

The Supreme People's Procuratorate by relies on the national e-government network to establish a unified case information disclosure system, and people's procuratorates at all levels handle efforts related to case information disclosure on this system in accordance with these provisions. The websites of people's procurates at all levels shall establish links to the people's procuratorates case information disclosure system.

Article 4: People's procuratorates must not disclose information touching upon state secrets, commercial secrets, personal privacy and information about cases of crimes committed by juveniles, as well other information that shall not be disclosed in accordance with laws and regulations or relevant provisions from the Supreme People's Procuratorate.

People's procuratorates shall establish and complete mechanisms for confidentiality review in releasing case information, clarifying responsibility and procedures in the review. Before the disclosure of case information, a review of the case information to be disclosed shall be made in accordance with the "PRC Law on Protecting Secrets", "PRC State Secrets Law Implementation Regulations", "Provisions on the Scope of State Secrets in Procuratorate Work" and other relevant regulations. Where any department is unable to confirm whether case information may be disclosed, it shall follow provisions to report to the secrecy department for confirmation.

Article 5: People's procuratorates' case management departments are the principle departments for case information disclosure work; responsible for work such as organizing, supervising and guiding case information disclosure and relevant service windows' inquiry services. Case handling departments are responsible for determining the secrecy classification of case information disclosure for that department, text processing and review. News publicity departments are responsible for review and release of case information and gathering and processing public opinion feedback. Secrecy departments are responsible for secrecy review and management. Technical information departments are responsible for technical safeguards. Relevant departments shall divide labor and responsibilities, and cooperate with each other.

Article 6: Individuals and units must not exploit case information disclosure efforts to obtain benefits.

Chapter II:  Procedural Case Information Queries

Article 7: People's procuratorates shall lawfully and promptly perform duties such as giving notice, informing, delivery and public announcement. Parties and their legally-designated representatives, or their close relatives, defenders or agents ad litem; may, in accordance with provisions, makes inquiries to the case handling department of a people's procuratorate on case procedural information such the cause of action, the time it was accepted, the time limits for case handling,the results of handling and compulsory measures.

Article 8: In inquiring about a case's procedural information, a party, his legally-designated representative, close relatives, defender or agent ad litem shall submit an identity card, power of attorney and other identifying documents to the Case Management Department of the People's Procuratorate that is handling the case.

For those found eligible after people's procuratorates review and verification of the identify of persons applying to make inquiries, they shall provide inquiry services or an online inquiry account. The applicant for inquiries may log-in to the people's procuratorate case information disclosure system using their account number, and inquire into relevant case procedural information.

Article 9: Where parties and their legally-designated representatives, close relatives, defenders, or agents ad litem need to make inquiries on case procedural information fin a case being handled by a people's procuratorate other than that for their normal residence, they may request the case management department of the county or district level people's procuratorate for their normal residence help them verify their identity. People's procuratorates that have had a request for assistance shall promptly contact the people's procuratorate handling the case and transfer the relevant materials; after the people's procuratorate handling the case has reviewed and recognized, it shall provide inquiry services or an inquiries account.

Article 10: Where defenders or agents ad litem lose credentials for making queries because they have ended the representation of a party, the people's procuratorate shall promptly cancel their query account.

Chapter III: Release of Important Case Information

Article 11: The people's procuratorates shall promptly release the following improtant case information:

(1) Case filing, investigation, arrest decisions, indictments and other such circumstances in cases of crimes abusing public power that have a relatively large social impact.

(2) Approval of arrest, indictments and other such circumstances in criminal cases that are widely followed by the public.

(3) Typical cases that have already had a disposition;

(4) Information on the development and conclusion of major, specialized work.

(5) Other important case information.

People's procuratorates must not release information to the public on the determination of case facts or evidence in a case that is currently being handled.

Article 12: People's procuratorates may use methods such as news spokespersons, press conferences, and providing news releases to release important case information and shall at the same time release the information in the people's procuratorate information disclosure system.

Article 13: The people's procuratorate handling a case is responsible for releasing important case information. A report up to the higher level procuratorate for permission shall be made before information is released in major or sensitive cases, as well as in cases assigned or overseen by higher level procuratorates; a report up to the Supreme People's Procuratorate for permission shall be made before releasing information in cases that have a major impact at a national scope. The people's procuratorate at the level above may release important case information that has already received permission simultaneously with the lower people's procuratorate.

Article 14: All levels of people's procuratorate's case handling departments are responsible for preparing that department's case information that shall be released; and after approval by the deputy chief procurator in charge or the chief procurator, that procuratorates news publicity department is responsible for release. Where a news publicity department has not been established, the case management department is responsible for releasing case information on the case information system, where it is necessary to release to other media, the general office or other designated department is responsible for release.

Article 15: When News Publicity departments and Case Management departments discover case information that should be released but has not been promptly released, they shall promptly coordinate with the Case Handling department to promptly release it.

Chapter IV:  Disclosure of Legal Documents

Article 16: Legal documents made by the people's procuratorates shall be promptly delivered and announced to parties, other litigation participants, and relevant units.

Article 17: Legal documents made by people's procuratorates for withrawal of a case, non-approval of an arrest and similar decisions, may provided for reading via methods such as that procuratorates electronic touch-screen displays.

Article 18: The following legal documents made by the people's procuratorates shall be released on the Procuratore's Case Information Disclosure System:

(1) Effective judgments and rulings decisions in criminal prosecutions or counter-appeals;

(2) Written decisions to not prosecute;

(3) Criminal appeal review decisions;

(4) Other legal documents that the Supreme People's Court determines shall be released in the system.

People's procurators must not release documents on internal information on the case information release system.

Article 19: People's procuratorates' releaseof legal documents on the case information disclosure system shall use methods such as symbolic substitutions to anonymize the following parties' and litigation participants' names:

(1) The victim and their legally-designated representative, witnesses and expert evaluators in criminal cases;

(2) The person not being indicted in a decision to not prosecute;

(3) Defendants sentenced to three years or less imprisonment or who have had punishment waived, that are not recidivists or habitual offenders.

Where parties or other litigation participants request that their full name be disclosed and submit a written application, anonymization may be skipped after review by the case handling department's responsible person and approval by deputy chief procurator in charge.

Article 20: People's procuratorates shall block the following content in releasing legal documents on the case information disclosure system:

(1) Natural persons' residential address, communication methods, ID number, bank accounts, health information and other personal information;

(2) Juvenile's relevant information;

(3) Legal Persons and other organizations' bank account numbers;

(4) Information related to state secrets, commercial secrets and personal privacy;

(5) Information that can be directly or logically deduced from the content expressed in the documents which should be blocked;

(6) other content not suitable for disclosure.

Article 21: Case handling personnel shall, within ten days after completing case handling or receiving an effective judgment or ruling from a people's court, follow these provisions in making a confidentiality review and technical processing of legal documents that need to be disclosed, and after reporting to the departments' responsible person for review and the deputy chief procurator or chief procurator for permission, submit it to the case handling department for review and release.

For legal instruments that need to be reported to the people's procuratorate at the higher level for the record and review, formalities for the release of legal documents as described in the previous clause shall be completed within 10 days after the recording and review.

Article 22: Legal documents released to the public shall be the same as the legal documents released to the parties except for technical handling of contents done in accordance with these Provisions.

Chapter V:  Monitoring and safeguards

Article 23: The people's procuratorate above shall organize and guide the lower people's procuratorates in the lawful and organized development of information disclosure efforts, and where discovering that lower level people's procuratorates have illegalities or improprieties in the course of case information disclosure work, shall promptly correct it.

Where case parties or their legally-designated representatives, close family members, defenders, agents ad litem, or other units or individuals feel that that case information released by people's procuratorates is not standardized or incorrect; they may give feedback on this to the people's procuratorate case management department. The case management department shall promptly coordinate the relevant departments for review and handling.

Article 24: All levels of people's procuratorate's news publicity departments, or other designated departments, shall comprehensively collect and review public opinion conditions brought on by case information disclosure work and promptly resolve it in conjunction with other relevant departments.

Article 25: People's procuratorate's case management departments shall periodically make statistics on and report on the status of that procuratorate and local procuratorate organs' case information disclosure work.

Chapter VI: Supplementary Provisions

Article 26: The technical specifications and standards of People's Procuratorates' disclosure of case information will be formulated by the Supreme People's Procuratorate.

Article 27: Provincial people's procuratorates may formulate detailed implementation regulations for case information disclosure based on these Provisions combined with actual local conditions.

Article 28: These Provisions take provisional effect from October 1, 2014. Where relevant provisions released by the Supreme People's Procuratorate are inconsistent with these Provisions, these Provisions control.


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