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UK man's case followed law: Official

[ 2009-12-23 13:05]     字号 [] [] []  
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The case of Akmal Shaikh, a British national who is expected to be executed next week in China for drug trafficking, was handled according to law, Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Jiang Yu said at a regular briefing yesterday.

Justice was delivered while taking the interests of the defendant into account, Jiang said.

"Drug smuggling is a grave crime in international practice. During the entire process, the litigation rights and the relevant rights and interests of the defendant were fully respected and guaranteed. China has offered prompt consular information to the UK and arranged consular visits," said Jiang.

The Briton from north London was caught in 2007 carrying 4 kg of heroin on arrival at Urumqi in the Xinjiang Uygur autonomous region.

The 53-year-old was sentenced to death on Oct 29, 2008, at the No 1 Intermediate People's Court of Urumqi.

Last May, Shaikh's appeal to the Higher People's Court of Xinjiang was rejected.

The convict will be executed on Dec 29, according to the Associated Press, which also said British Prime Minister Gordon Brown has asked Beijing to spare Shaikh's life.

The drug trafficker was allegedly suffering from mental health problems and was duped into carrying drugs into China, the AP said in its report of Shaikh's defense.

Jiang said that China's judicial authorities independently handled this case in accordance with the law.

Under Article 347 of China's Criminal Law, for those guilty of smuggling, trafficking, or transporting heroin, the threshold for a death sentence is 50 grams. Shaikh brought with him 80 times that quantity.

According to Article 18 of the Criminal Law, a mental patient can have his or her criminal responsibility exempted only when the crime was committed when he or she had no control of his or her conduct.

Even if his or her mental illness is of an intermittent nature, he or she shall bear criminal responsibility if a crime was committed when he or she is in a normal mental state.

Shaikh would become the first EU national to be executed in China in 50 years, according to Sky News Online.


1. How many kg of heroin was the defendant caught with?

2. Under article 347, in weight, what is the threshold for a death sentence for transporting heroin?

3. According to Sky News the defendant will become the first EU national to be executed in China in how many years?


1. 4kg.

2. 50 grams.

3. 50-years.


(中国日报网英语点津 Helen 编辑)

UK man's case followed law: Official

About the broadcaster:

UK man's case followed law: Official

Lee Hannon is Chief Editor at China Daily with 15-years experience in print and broadcast journalism. Born in England, Lee has traveled extensively around the world as a journalist including four years as a senior editor in Los Angeles. He now lives in Beijing and is happy to move to China and join the China Daily team.