Feeds

Chinese court deploys sentencing software

'Computer says 10 years, comrade'

Choosing a cloud hosting partner with confidence

China has tested a software programme designed to "help decide prison sentences", Reuters reports.

According to Hong Kong's South China Morning Post, judges in Zichuan District Court in the city of Zibo, Shandong province, have for the last two years entered details of a crime into a computer which then delivers its verdict.

Whether the judicial PC has the final say is, however, unclear as Reuters notes that "court rulings are often decided by 'trial committees' made up of judges and Communist Party officials".

Nonetheless, the software's developer, Qin Ye, told the paper: "The software is aimed at ensuring standardised decisions on prison terms. Our programs set standard terms for any subtle distinctions in different cases of the same crime."

Zichuan District Court chief judge, Wang Hongmei, added: "The software can avoid abuse of discretionary power of judges as a result of corruption or insufficient training."

To date, more than 1,500 defendants have been sentenced by the programme, into which developers incorporated mainland Chinese criminal law encompassing around 100 crimes, including murder, rape, robbery and "state security offences". It will now be deployed in more Shangdong courts, the South China Morning Post notes.

Some Chinese papers, however, have condemned the e-judge software as a further example of the "laziness of the court". They also doubted that it would do much to tackle corruption. ®

Bootnote

Sentencing by PC for "state security offences"? Dissidents beware the "blue screen of death", and no messing.

Security for virtualized datacentres

More from The Register

next story
WHY did Sunday Mirror stoop to slurping selfies for smut sting?
Tabloid splashes, MP resigns - but there's a BIG copyright issue here
Spies, avert eyes! Tim Berners-Lee demands a UK digital bill of rights
Lobbies tetchy MPs 'to end indiscriminate online surveillance'
How the FLAC do I tell MP3s from lossless audio?
Can you hear the difference? Can anyone?
Google hits back at 'Dear Rupert' over search dominance claims
Choc Factory sniffs: 'We're not pirate-lovers - also, you publish The Sun'
While you queued for an iPhone 6, Apple's Cook sold shares worth $35m
Right before the stock took a 3.8% dive amid bent and broken mobe drama
Inequality increasing? BOLLOCKS! You heard me: 'Screw the 1%'
There's morality and then there's economics ...
prev story

Whitepapers

Providing a secure and efficient Helpdesk
A single remote control platform for user support is be key to providing an efficient helpdesk. Retain full control over the way in which screen and keystroke data is transmitted.
Intelligent flash storage arrays
Tegile Intelligent Storage Arrays with IntelliFlash helps IT boost storage utilization and effciency while delivering unmatched storage savings and performance.
Beginner's guide to SSL certificates
De-mystify the technology involved and give you the information you need to make the best decision when considering your online security options.
Security for virtualized datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.
Secure remote control for conventional and virtual desktops
Balancing user privacy and privileged access, in accordance with compliance frameworks and legislation. Evaluating any potential remote control choice.