The researchers claim the technology can decide on charges with more than 97 per cent accuracy based on a verbal description of the case.
The machine was built and tested by the Shanghai Pudong People’s Procuratorate, China’s busiest district prosecution office.
So far, it can identify and press charges for Shanghai’s eight most common crimes, including credit card fraud, theft, dangerous driving and picking quarrels – an offence often used against dissidents.
The technology was trained using more than 17,000 cases from 2015 to 2020. It can run on a desktop computer and decides whether to press a charge by analysing hundreds of “traits” obtained from a human-generated case description, according to a report in the South China Morning Post.
Once charges are brought they are almost guaranteed to end in conviction, as China’s acquittal rate is less than one per cent.
The project’s lead scientist, Professor Shi Yong, director of the Chinese Academy of Sciences’ big data and knowledge management laboratory, said the machine could free up prosecutors to focus on more difficult tasks.
“The system can replace prosecutors in the decision-making process to a certain extent,” said Shi and his colleagues in a paper published this month in the Chinese peer-reviewed journal Management Review.
Read more: This is the future as I have long predicted if we allow this to continue … Chinese scientists create ‘world first’ AI prosecutor that will decide people’s fate. China today is the world tomorrow