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Court rules on judges' spouses

THE Jing'an District People's Court has ruled that if a judge's spouse is a lawyer, one of them should quit their job.

The measure is designed to prevent judicial corruption.

The court said judges whose spouses are lawyers won't be able to handle cases or work to enforce court verdicts.

So far, of the six judges in the court whose spouses are lawyers, one won't deal with cases any more, two will be transferred to other departments in the district and spouses of the remaining three judges plan to give up their lawyer's licenses, according to Li Hongguang, a judge of the court.

"The measure will prevent judges from being affected by lawyers and help keep impartiality for the people," Li said.

The court will arrange work in other departments for judges who quit, he added.

In future, the court won't employ people whose spouses are lawyers.

The measure is based on a self-discipline rule issued by the Shanghai Higher People's Court early this year but is stricter. The rule says judges whose spouses are lawyers can't be leaders in courts.

Lawyer Liu Chunquan said he welcomed the practice because it may make court verdicts fairer.

But he also said the move didn't seem to have a legal basis since it violated the judges' right to work.


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