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What age do you think is appropriate for criminal liability?


A very hungry caterpillar

Oct 13, 2020, 16:45

A draft amendment to the Criminal Law was submitted to the bimonthly session of the National People's Congress Standing Committee, China's top legislature, for a second review on Tuesday.

Here are the highlights:

Draft amendment proposes age of criminal liability in China to be lowered to 12 in some special situations. 

Draft amendment proposes holding "college imposters" in China criminally liable.

Draft amendment proposes harsher punishment for sexual assault of girls under 10.

Parents or other guardians who sexually assault their children aged 14 to 16 shall be sentenced to no more than 3 years in prison; those involved in serious cases could be sentenced to 3 to 10 years' imprisonment.

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For the criteria of the age, it really depends, may varies from case to case.  That may also need large scale if research or discussion from people & legal professionals in China. 

GhostBuster post time: 2020-10-13 22:35

Very true and dead on.

  However, my above statement is totally useless...

   In my opinion, my grandshild staying in the same household and being fed and accomodated by my siblings will be nothing else but a person residing freely with her parents.

  Their age wouldn't be of any consideraton whatsoever as far as I'm concerned...

A very hungry caterpillar

The current age of criminal liability in China is 14. The amendment proposes that it be lowered to 12 in cases where the offense is murder or intentional injury leading to a person's death. The Supreme People's Procuratorate will review cases to decide whether the age of criminal liability should be lowered.

The move will go a long way in protecting juveniles in China. While the Juvenile Protection Law exempts juveniles from criminal liability, it is not without problems.

Some juvenile delinquents have the potential to commit more violent offenses or crimes when they grow up, making it clear that age may not be the right criterion for judging whether they should bear criminal liability for the offenses they commit.

Besides, most victims of juvenile crimes are also juveniles. If the offenders escape punishment according to the Criminal Law, we cannot say justice has been done.

On Oct 20, 2019, a 13-year-old boy tried to rape a 10-year-old girl in Dalian, Liaoning province, and killed her when the attempt failed. During investigation, the police found that he did not regret his action one bit. However, he did not face any criminal charges because of his age. He was just sent to a detention center for "education".

Furthermore, his parents did not pay the 1.28 million yuan ($189,540) compensation the court had asked them to pay the girl's family.

Many claim that the Juvenile Protection Law, though meant to protect law-abiding juveniles, often ends up protecting the law-breakers.

The proposed draft amendment, by lowering the criminal liability age, could better prevent juvenile crimes. The procedures are so strict that those committing light offenses will not receive severe punishment. Hope the amendment passes and juveniles get better protection.


Today, this is a very serious social order matter. Need nation wide survey and decide the acceptable age.