The Supreme People's Court (SPC) is to enforce a judicial interpretation on the review and execution procedures for the death penalty to protect the convicts' lawful rights and interests starting from Sept. 1, the SPC announced Friday.
When delivering the judgment documents to the defendants, higher people's courts should notify the defendants of their rights to be represented by a lawyer when the SPC is reviewing their death sentences, the judicial interpretation stipulates.
The defense lawyer is obligated to submit relevant evidence materials and documents to the SPC within 10 days after the acceptance or designation to be the defense lawyer, and present the statement of defense within 45 days, the interpretation says.
When the statement or evidence may affect the review results of the death sentence, the execution should be suspended or ceased, even if the ruling of the review has been made, according to the judicial interpretation.
The people's courts should also inform the convicts of their right to meet their close relatives and grant their applications for recording their last words with audio or video devices, it adds.
Requests for meeting convicts under the death penalty by close relatives should be allowed, unless the convicts refuse the meeting, the judicial interpretation says, adding that the convicts have the right to ask for meeting with their friends or relatives other than close relatives on the premise of safety.
The convicts' requests for meeting with their minor children should be granted with the consent of the minors' guardians and conducted in a way that brings no physical or psychological harm to the minors, it says.