September 22, 2018

capital punishment

‘Forging and Selling Invoices to Avoid Taxes’ in China Is No Longer Punishable By Death

We Americans do love a good firing squad/lethal injection/electric chair/hangin’ but the Chinese make us look like a bunch of pansies by comparison. However, after several millennia, China might be getting soft in its old age. As the Associated Press reports, some economic crimes have been pulled from the “do this and die” list:

Thirteen economic, nonviolent offenses will be removed from the list of 68 crimes punishable by death, said Lang Sheng, who heads a legal committee for the National People’s Congress, China’s legislature. The 13 crimes include forging and selling invoices to avoid taxes, and smuggling cultural relics and precious metals such as gold out of the country.

However, it should be noted, “[A]n expert said the move was unlikely to significantly reduce executions, since people convicted of those crimes in the past have rarely received the maximum penalty and capital punishment can still be used to punish other economic crimes such as corruption.”

We’re not intimately familiar with all the potential criminal tax pitfalls in China, so it’s safe to assume there are plenty of other tax crimes that will still get you the dirt nap. International tax scofflaws should tread carefully.

China drops death penalty for some economic crimes [AP via Gawker]