Top court rulings protect citizens' property rights

Updated 2018-01-30 17:09:59 Xinhua

The Supreme People's Court (SPC) on Tuesday published several typical cases on property rights protection, including one in which local police were required to provide compensation for their violations during a criminal proceeding.

In the case, the provincial police authority in Liaoning arrested Liu Hua and Liu Jie in a criminal investigation and seized 20 million yuan (about 3.16 million U.S. dollars) in funds from their company, Beipeng Real Estate Development Co. Ltd. in Shenyang, in 2008.

In 2014, a local court convicted the two and the company of illegal occupation of farmland but exempted them from criminal punishment. However, despite of the company's multiple requests, the seized funds and financial documents were not returned.

The company filed an application for state compensation to the SPC's compensation committee in 2015, and after a court hearing with SPC Vice President Tao Kaiyuan as the chief judge, the committee ruled that the local police should return the funds confiscated previously and pay interest totaling 830,000 yuan.

"The right to obtain state compensation is a constitutional right of the country's citizens, and it should be guaranteed," Tao said.

Xiong Qiuhong, a procedural law researcher at the Institute of Law of Chinese Academy of Social Sciences, noted the problem of failure to timely return seized property after a legal seizure by the authority. "In that case, due compensation should be paid."

In a separate case that concluded earlier this month, the third circuit court of the SPC ruled that the government of Wucheng District in the city of Jinhua, east China's Zhejiang Province, should pay compensation for its illegal dismantling of the houses owned by resident Xu Shuiyun without due process, and that the compensation should also take the rise of home prices into account.

At the court, Guo Huiqiang, head of the local government, said the the court procedure had increased their awareness of law-based government administration, and pledged to follow due process in handling issues in the future.

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