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Comparative Criminal Law and Enforcement: China - The Trend Of Liberalization And Its Limits

crimes abolition omission principle

There are a number of amendments to China's substantive criminal law that are of significant symbolic value. They include the abolition of counterrevolutionary crimes, replacing them with crimes endangering state security; and the abolition of the principle of analogy, which allowed a court to punish an act or omission according to the most closely analogous article in the criminal law where the act or omission was not expressly prohibited by the law. Both counterrevolutionary crimes and the principle of analogy were notorious concepts in Chinese criminal law and their abolition is regarded as a major step forward in developing the rule of law in China.

Another important change of great important symbolic value is the acceptance in the Criminal Law of the principles of no crime except in accordance with law and equality before the law (CL, Arts. 3 and 4). But it is the changes in the criminal procedure that have more practical implications.

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