Nation fights epidemic-related crimes

By Xu Keyue Source:Global Times Published: 2020/2/4 19:57:14

Photo: Xinhua

China's Ministry of Public Security (MPS) and local governments at all levels vowed to crack down on coronavirus-related crimes to ensure social stability, in which violators could face the death penalty. 

Minister of Public Security Zhao Kezhi requested public security organs at all levels to probe illegal and criminal activities that cause trouble and sabotage social order, and resolutely safeguard national political security, according to MPS' website on Tuesday.

The ministry vowed to increase patrols and strengthen the police's authority and control. 

Manufacturing and selling counterfeit and substandard medicines and medical devices, harming medical personnel, disrupting medical services, blocking or interrupting traffic, and using the epidemic to inflate prices will be severely punished, the ministry said.

The MPS also said it would investigate and resolve disputes involving doctors, and severely crack down on violence against medical personnel to ensure proper treatment. 

Priorities shall be given to the passage of ambulances, vehicles used for epidemic control and those carrying daily necessities, the ministry said.

Governments at different levels have begun to crack down on crimes related to the coronavirus outbreak as the whole country is fighting to control the epidemic.

A government official from Shangrao, East China's Jiangxi Province, told the Global Times on Tuesday that multiple towns in the city have issued warnings against coronavirus-related acts.

People who intentionally conceal that they may be infected with the virus and go to public places shall be subject to detention, according to the notice the official provided to the Global Times. 

The High People's Court of Northeast China's Heilongjiang Province published an urgent notice on its website on Friday, saying it would severely punish 36 crimes related to the prevention and control of the epidemic in accordance with the law, in which violators could face the death penalty. 

People who spread the virus intentionally and endanger public security could be regarded as violating the Criminal Law, which states that actions that "endanger public security" can be subject to the death penalty if the situation is severe. 

Those who use the virus to fabricate or spread rumors, to promote secession from China or undermine national unity, or incite subversion of state power or the overthrow of the socialist system can face a maximum 15-year jail term.

Changchun police of Northeast China's Jilin Province investigated a man in the name of "endanger public security" for concealing travel history to critical epidemic area, causing five infections and more isolated for medical observation, the People's Daily reported Tuesday. 

Beijing's market regulation authorities on January 23 imposed a maximum 3 million yuan ($429,000) of fine on a local pharmacy that raised the price of N95 masks from 200 to 850 yuan per box.


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