Parading criminals through the streets has been a no-no in China since a ban was imposed 25 years ago.
So it was a blast from the past when local authorities committed the dastardly act last Friday in Huarong prefecture, which is under the jurisdiction of Yueyang, Hunan province.
More than 20 criminals and suspects were put on trial in front of more than 5,000 people after they were paraded on vehicles through the streets for all and sundry to see, Ming Pao Daily reported Thursday.
The event was widely discussed online, raising both criticism and praise among Chinese netizens.
In 1989, a notice jointly issued by the Supreme People’s Court, the Supreme People’s Procuratorate and the Ministry of Public Security banned local authorities of public safety, prosecution and justice from parading prisoners, convicted or not.
The parade on Friday was not the first seen in Huarong, which was ranked the most socially stable prefecture in Yueyang in the first half of the year.
Among the arrested, sixteen were detained under charges of fraud, theft and murder and eight were convicted on the spot of kidnapping, rape and robbery.
The local government’s so-called four chiefs — chief of public security, chief prosecutor, chief of justice and chief of the judicial bureau — all participated in the open trial.
The party secretary of the prefecture said in 2009 that a trial to convict criminals in front of the public was good because it met the needs of the people.
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