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Court observer system will aid trial transparency: Judicial Yuan

2012/04/24 21:12:07

Taipei, April 24 (CNA) A scheme of court observers can serve as the basis for establishing trust in the judicial system, as the primary obstacle facing the system is the public's lack of knowledge and confidence, the Judicial Yuan vice president said Tuesday.

Five primary and two stand-by observers participated in a simulated trial held by the Chiayi District Court that day, a second test run for the observer scheme.

Judicial Yuan Vice President Su Yeong-chin, who attended the test run, said the system is aimed at allowing the public to participate in the criminal trial process and to give the judiciary more transparency.

Under the proposed system, the observers can express their opinions but cannot render verdicts.

Su said that the majority of the public are unfamiliar with the judicial process, which has led to mistrust toward the judicial system. Thus, allowing the public to attend the trial process could help overcome this obstacle.

Meanwhile, Judicial Yuan President Rai Hau-min said in a post-test run seminar later in the day that the observer system has several advantages, including more transparency, more thorough protection of defendants' rights, a chance to enhance the public's legal literacy and to make judges and prosecutors maintain a better professional attitude.

(By Huang Kuo-fang and Nell Shen)