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China releases first group of pardoned prisoners

China Daily | Updated: 2019-08-01 09:12


The first group of prisoners who were granted special pardons on June 29 have been released, according to a statement given to Xinhua News Agency on Tuesday.

The Standing Committee of the National People's Congress, China's top legislature, adopted a decision granting the pardons to nine categories of criminals on the 70th anniversary of the founding of the People's Republic of China on June 29.

A prisoner surnamed Lu received the formal special pardon document from a court in Nantong, Jiangsu province, on July 21.

Lu was sentenced to 4.5 years in prison for a traffic accident in 2015. He had been on parole and had been receiving community correction since 2018.

"Through the pardon deal, I felt the Party and State's careful application of penalties and good intent to help us correct ourselves," he said.

Lu, 51, is a veteran of wars to safeguard national sovereignty, security and territorial integrity after the founding of the PRC in 1949, thus making him eligible for the special pardon.

Another veteran, a prisoner surnamed Yu from Shandong province, was also released thanks to the pardon deal.

"I will surely value this opportunity to do good and step out when the Party and State need me," Yu said.

A 54-year-old prisoner surnamed Xu was released from prison in Guangdong province on Saturday afternoon. He had been sentenced to five years and three months in prison in October.

Xu had received provincial honorable titles for scientific and technological achievements, which made him eligible for the pardon.

"We are grateful for the Party and State," said Xu's wife, who greeted him outside the prison gate. "I believe that he will cherish life more than before."

The wave of special pardons this year are the ninth since the founding of the PRC, according to the Legislative Affairs Commission of the NPC Standing Committee.

From 1949 to 1975, seven special pardons were granted to prisoners, including war criminals and counterrevolutionary offenders. In 2015, the country pardoned 31,527 inmates to mark the 70th anniversary of the victory of the War of Resistance Against Japanese Aggression (1931-45) and the World Anti-Fascist War.


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