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Association defends improperly treated lawyers

By Zhang Yan | China Daily | Updated: 2017-09-27 07:18

The All China Lawyers Association and its local branches received 59 complaints in August involving the infringement of lawyers' rights, the association said on Tuesday.

Of those, 25 cases have been resolved, with lawyers' rights being protected. The other cases are still under investigation, Lyu Hongbing, vice-president of the association, said on Tuesday.

Lyu said most complaints involve claims that defense lawyers' rights were harmed - for example, lawyers being prevented from meeting clients during investigations or from reviewing case files or collecting evidence.

In recent years, a growing number of such violations have occurred across the country, drawing attention from the public and media, observers said.

To tackle the issue, the lawyers' group at the national and local levels set up two centers in March - one to protect lawyers' rights and the other for handling complaints and reports against lawyers.

"If we receive reports about serious violations of lawyers' rights, we will immediately set up a team for further investigation and coordinate with other departments to deal with the cases in a timely manner and give feedback about the results," Jiang Min, the association's spokesman, said on Tuesday.

In a typical case, the Wuhan Lawyers Association in Hubei province received a report in August claiming that Liu Bo, a lawyer at the Yingchu Law Firm, was beaten by opposing parties when the court mediated a case, the association said.

After receiving the report, the association immediately launched its quick-response mechanism and sent a formal document and evidence to Hongshan District People's Court in Wuhan.

After further investigation, the guilty parties were required to apologize to the lawyer and the court issued a serious warning to them, the association said.

Lyu said the association will gather the valuable experiences and best practices of local branches to smooth the channel for receiving reports and handling the cases.

Moreover, it will call on authorities to speed up the enactment of a so-called Law of Lawyers, which will offer a legal basis for lawyers to better serve clients and protect their rights, he said.

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