From October 24 – 26, Paul Cassell participated in the Changbai International Forum on Criminal Law at Jilin University School of Law in Changchun, China. On October 24, Cassell first addressed students at Jilin University about the issue of crime victims’ rights in American law. On October 25 and 26, Cassell participated in the forum on emerging issues of criminal law in China and elsewhere.
Cassell presented a paper regarding the need to provide comprehensive restitution to victims of child pornography crimes in the United States. Cassell also commented on a paper presented by Professor Wang Mu, President of the Chinese Criminology Association and Professor of Law at the China University of Political Science and Law.
On behalf of the overseas participants in the conference, Cassell was invited to present the closing address. In his concluding remarks, Cassell emphasized the shared aspirations for justice held by citizens of the United States, South Korean, and China:
“Certainly there are differences, at the margins, between societies such as China, South Korea, and the United States,” Cassell said. “But I suspect that public opinion—that is, the public—in all our countries wants the same basic things. The public in all our countries wants a criminal justice system that:
- Respects basic human rights;
- Does not allow the government to impose arbitrary punishments;
- Protects against dangerous criminal acts;
- And punishes only when necessary and in a fair and humane manner.
As birds of a feather – that is, as criminal law scholars in our respective countries – we have important responsibilities to help our societies develop their criminal justice systems that reflect the very best from our particular cultures,” he concluded.