Chinese judge visits Southern Cross University

Published 26 April 2007

A Beijing judge from the Supreme People’s Court of the People’s Republic of China is visiting Southern Cross University’s School of Law and Justice and the Northern Rivers region this week as part of a four-month professional development program in Australia.

Judge Yang Honglei is one of 10 Chinese legal professionals taking part in the Australia-China Legal Development Program, a joint initiative of the Attorney-General’s Department, the Law Council of Australia, the International Legal Services Advisory Council, the Chinese Ministry of Justice and the All China Lawyers Association.

Professor Bee Chen Goh, Head of Southern Cross University’s School of Law and Justice, said the University was one of only a handful of law schools to be privileged to host the visiting Judge.

“This is a great opportunity to raise awareness of the Northern Rivers region and to look at opportunities for future Australia-China exchanges. We have been able to arrange for the Judge to spend the day with members of the region’s legal profession,” Professor Goh said.

Judge Yang, who is one of 216 judges in China’s Supreme People’s Court, said Australia’s court system was very different and there was much to learn. In China, the court is based on a civil law inquisitorial-judicial system, whereas in Australia it is based on the common law adversarial-judicial system. His work involves commercial arbitration, particularly in cases involving a foreign party.

“I will be looking to get some answers to problems relating to international arbitration. I would also like to develop a deeper relationship with the University to exchange information,” he said.

Judge Yang will meet with University academics and attend the University Graduation on Friday, and meet with private legal firms including Walters, and the Far North Coast Law Society in the Northern Rivers region. He will also meet with Judge Black at Lismore’s District Court.

Photo: Judge Yang Honglei with Professor Bee Chen Goh (left), Head of the School of Law and Justice, and lecturer Cherie Pittman.

Media contact: Brigid Veale Southern Cross University communications manager, 02 66593006 or 0439 680 748.