Why Did China Reform It’s Death Penalty?
Santa Clara University - School of Law
August 10, 2009
Pacific Rim Law & Policy Journal, Forthcoming
Santa Clara Univ. Legal Studies Research Paper No. 09-14
China recently reformed its death penalty procedures, and as a result the government has executed fewer prisoners. The author explores possible explanations for and policy concerns behind this change and evaluates their implications for the future of the death penalty in China. The influences for the change include international forces and domestic factors, such as academic criticism, the media, changed circumstances in society, compassion, and politics. Although hardly transparent, the underlying motivations for the revisions suggest that China eventually may abolish capital punishment, perhaps before the United States does so. However, recent signals indicate that officials may be ending the 'lenient' period, suggesting that the reforms may mean much less than thought initially.
Number of Pages in PDF File: 25
Keywords: International Transnational & Comparative Criminal Law, Asian Law, Law and Society, Criminal Law
Date posted: August 12, 2009 ; Last revised: September 9, 2009