Chinese Computer Takes Over Government

Chinese scientists claim to have invented the computer that uses artificial intelligence to charge criminals.


The equipment was constructed and tested by the Shanghai Pudong Procuratorate, the country’s largest prosecutor’s office.

Credit card fraud, conducting a gambling operation, reckless driving, intentional injury, impeding official responsibilities, theft, fraud, and provoking a dispute are the eight most common crimes in Shanghai, according to the machine.

According to the scientists, the so-called AI “prosecutor” can file a charge with 97 percent accuracy, based on a written explanation of a case.

Professor Shi Yong, the project’s principal scientist, said AI technology may help attorneys focus on more demanding tasks by reducing their daily duties.

She is also the director of the Chinese Academy of Sciences’ big data and knowledge management laboratory, the government’s top state-run research organization.

“To some extent, the system can substitute prosecutors in the decision-making process,” Shi and his colleagues wrote in the Chinese peer-reviewed journal, Management Review.

The South China Daily Post was the first to report on the new AI machine. Chinese authorities began using AI in 2016, according to Shi and his colleagues.

Many of them now use “System 206,” an artificial intelligence program. The system can assess the strength of evidence, the circumstances surrounding an arrest, and the public danger posed by a suspect.

However, because “they do not participate in the decision-making process of bringing charges and [suggesting] penalties,” all available AI technologies played a limited role, according to the research.

It noted that making such determinations necessitates a machine identifying and removing any items of a case file that are irrelevant to a crime, while keeping the relevant information.

According to the study, the machine must also convert the complicated, already human language into a simple mathematical or geometric style that a computer can understand.

China’s internet corporations created excellent natural language processing technologies, but their functioning frequently necessitates the use of huge computers, which authorities do not have.

This is a Really Bad Idea

Shi’s team designed an AI “prosecutor” that could run on a computer.

It would lay a case against each suspect decided up on 1,000 “traits” extracted from the human-generated case description language, the majority of which is too short or complex for humans to understand.

The evidence would then be evaluated by System 206.

From 2015 to 2020, they used almost 17,000 cases to teach the algorithm, according to Shi.

With updates, the AI prosecutor was intended to become more effective, according to the publication. It would be able to notice less prevalent offenses and filing many charges against a single person.

However, Chinese authorities raised concerns about the new computer. According to the story, a prosecutor in Guangzhou expressed reservations about using an AI prosecutor to file charges.