China Develops World’s First AI Prosecutor

China is aggressively expanding in the field of artificial intelligence, merging the science of AI in a variety of government sectors to ease the workload. The latest development is the creation of ‘AI Prosecutor’ – the world’s first of its kind. 

AI Prosecutor

The AI Prosecutor can identify and file charges with more than 97% accuracy depending solely on verbal descriptions. According to the South China Morning Post and a research paper published in the journal Management Review, “The system can replace prosecutors in the decision-making process to a certain extent.” The system was developed and tested at Shanghai Pudong People’s Procuratorate – China’s largest and busiest district public prosecution office. 

Representative Image acquired from UNILAD.

The Director of the Chinese Academy of Sciences’ big data and knowledge management laboratory, and the project’s lead scientist, Professor Shi Yong, claim the AI technology will help to ‘reduce prosecutors’ daily workload, allowing them to focus on more difficult tasks.’

As part of its ‘training’, the system analyzed 17,000 past cases from 2015 to 2020. This training honed AI prosecutor to identify 1000 traits, “most of which are too small or abstract to make sense to humans.”

AI Prosecutor can be run on a regular desktop computer. It can prosecute criminals based on eight common crimes such as credit card fraud, gambling, reckless driving, intentional assault, obstructing an officer, theft, fraud, political dissent, and ‘picking quarrels and provoking trouble’.

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System 206

China dipped into the swarm of artificial intelligence technology in 2016 with the onset of System 206. Since 2016, System 206 has extended its usefulness to Chinese law enforcement to assess “strength of evidence, conditions for an arrest and how dangerous a suspect is considered to be to the public.”

With the introduction of AI Prosecutor, AI can be involved beyond System 206’s technology of evaluation of case files, but also in the decision-making aspect of it. While this news has made its round as a feat in technological advancement, the increasing use of AI in China has raised some apprehensions. 

“The accuracy of 97 percent may be high from a technological point of view, but there will always be a chance of a mistake,” said the prosecutor to SCMP.


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Feature Image via CoinDesk.

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