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Article
Legalism and Constitutionalism in the People’s Republic of
International Journal of Criminal Justice Sciences (2006)
  • Kam C. Wong
Abstract

There are repeated claims that the police in the People’s Republic of China (PRC), i.e. Gongan (police) or Jincha (public security) abuse their legal powers. This has been attributed to a lack of institutional supervision and a failure of legal control over the proper exercise of police power. Most tellingly, a great number of people in the PRC criminal justice system consider the current legal procedures regulating police powers as a burden and waste of time and money. Particularly, the police think that it is more important to get correct results than to abide by procedure rules, i.e., "zhong shiti qingchenxu" (emphasize substance and slight procedures). Police studies in the U.S. suggested that the underlying cause of police abuse of power is beyond the lack of administrative or legal control; they point to larger social, political, and cultural forces at work. This paper identifies and discusses two cultural reasons -- the lack of an entrenched legal culture in the rule of law and the absence of an ingrained constitutional spirit in limited government -- in an attempt to explain PRC police abuse of power. Keywords

Keywords
  • PRC Law,
  • Constitution in China,
  • Constitutionalism,
  • Legqalism. Chinese jurisprudence
Disciplines
Publication Date
2006
Citation Information
Kam C. Wong. "Legalism and Constitutionalism in the People’s Republic of" International Journal of Criminal Justice Sciences Vol. 1 Iss. 2 (2006)
Available at: http://works.bepress.com/kam_wong/13/