China convicts nearly 30,000 for IPR crimes

Chinese courts have convicted 29,852 people for crimes relating to intellectual property rights (IPR) since 2008, according to China’s Chief Justice Wang Shengjun on Tuesday.

By June 2012, courts had received 20,596 IPR-related criminal cases and concluded 19,691, said Wang during a briefing to legislators at an ongoing bimonthly session of the Standing Committee of the National People’s Congress (NPC).

During the same period, 180,213 civil law suits were closed, including 5,670 involving foreign parties, according to Wang, also president of China’s Supreme People’s Court (SPC).

The SPC is responsible to the NPC and its standing committee under the Chinese Constitution.

The figure of concluded administrative trials stood at 8,749, with 1,088 resulting in revocation of government decisions, Wang said.

Wang highlighted the use of mediation in IPR proceedings, noting that 66.7 percent of civil IPR cases ended up in withdrawal after mediation, including the highly attended Apple vs. Proview over the “iPad” trademark.

The courts had also published 43,488 pieces of IPR case judgement documents on the Internet by June, so as to enhance transparency of judicial work, said Wang.

The 2008-2011 period also witnessed an average annual growth rate of 33.1 percent of registered IPR cases, 26.3 percentage points higher than those of regular civil disputes, according to Wang’s report.

China had 2,731 IPR judges working in 420 courts by June, said Wang.

In response to growing difficulties in handling complex cases, Wang suggested to set up independent IPR courts, further clarify legislation on IPR proceedings and promote a culture of credit in commercial activities and social life.

Xinhua