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Sending sex-implicit messages may violate the law
(Shanghai Daily)
Updated: 2006-02-21 09:46

Turn down the volume when belting out songs at your home karaoke. Refrain from sending sex-implicit text messages to others. Don't take your friend's car for a short drive without his or her consent.

You may have done all this without qualms but starting next month you face a fine or even jail if police are alerted, according to a Chinese law to go into force next month.

The law is China's first on punishment for violators of public security rules.

The current regulations on public order management, which took effect in September 1986, didn't cover the above three violations and other offenses.

According to the law, police will issue a fine of 200 yuan (US$24.8) to 500 yuan to those whose singing causes a disturbance in the neighborhood.

People who install loudspeakers at public places like a park will also be target of officers if residents say the noise upsets their life.

If you repeatedly send text messages containing information considered sexually implicit or insulting or meant to spark terror, you can be jailed for up to nine days and fined below 500 yuan.

The same punishment applies to a person who violates another citizen's privacy by peeping at, secretly taking pictures of and eavesdropping on anyone when they are engaged in private, but legal, activities, like passionate moments in bed.

If you have a driver's license but no car and drive your friend's vehicle to practice your driving skills without getting his or her nod first, you may be fined at least 500 yuan if the friend calls police.

Forced trade even involving small sums of money are also punishable. If a thug opens a bottle of beer on a train and forces a passenger to buy it - apart from the beating that is imminent, jail for between five and 10 days and a fine of 200-500 yuan are possible, as stated in the new law.

The current rules only specify punishable fraud involving a person masquerading as a staff of a government department.

In addition, the new law says deceiving others of valuables by pretending to be a journalist, professor, lawyer, relative of offspring of a senior government official, and using other fake identities, invites jail of up to nine days and a fine of 500 yuan.

Nevertheless, citizens are also granted more leniency than before when violating public security rules.

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