Approaches and Methods in Criminal Law Legislation in a Transitional Period

Social Sciences in China (Chinese Edition)

No.3, 2016


Approaches and Methods in Criminal Law Legislation in a Transitional Period



Zhou Guangquan


Chinese criminal law legislation in this transitional period needs to transform the concept of legally protected interests in a timely fashion, strengthen new means of regulation, endow criminal law with new functions, and take an active part in social governance. There is a certain distance between active legislation and the traditional ideas of criminal law. Hence such legislation faces many new difficulties, though it would not bring with it the systemic risk of excessive interference by criminal law. Criminalization does not conflict with criminal law’s concept of modest restraint, so we cannot conclude that the smaller the scope of punishment, the better. In terms of overall approach, we should establish a dynamic, rational and diversified legislative mechanism for the future. In terms of specific methods, legislation must maintain an approach of active intervention in the life of society, changing the current centralized legislative model. However, decentralized legislation should not necessarily adopt the tripartite model involving the criminal code, individual criminal laws and auxiliary criminal laws, but should construct a written criminal law system centered on the criminal code and supplemented by the law on minor offenses, in parallel with criminal penalties and public security measures. This will produce a mechanism for the seamless incremental convergence of public security administrative punishment law, minor offenses law, and criminal law. The nets of justice are fine-meshed but the penalties are light.