• Germany edition
 
Bosch under fire for China prison tech sales
Photo: Bosch internet website screenshot

Bosch under fire for China prison tech sales

Published: 08 Dec 2012 14:36 GMT+01:00
Updated: 08 Dec 2012 14:36 GMT+01:00

Bosch, the southern German maker of household appliances and DIY tools, is touting for trade with Chinese jails - offering surveillance systems to spy on prisoners at visiting time.

The Süddeutsche Zeitung newspaper reported on Saturday that Bosch had been a prominent exhibitor at the "Security China 2012" trade fair in Beijing.

The Swabian company also had a crudely animated internet site in Chinese which showed prisoners in orange jumpsuits being watched. "Trust us when it's about your security," is the Bosch tagline.

Human rights activists criticised the videos, one of which the Süddeutsche Zeitung said showed a guard bringing a prisoner into a visiting room complete with a glass wall.

As the prisoner sits down, the Chinese subtitles say, "Observe the conversation between visitors and prisoner. You decide how long the channels of communication are open."

The site has since been taken off the internet.

"The People's Republic of China is an authoritarian state which systematically abuses human rights. It is unacceptable that Bosch intends to profit from helping to maintain the repressive system," Kai Müller, manager of the International Campaign for Tibet told the paper.

Wolfgang Büttner from Human Rights Watch also criticised the sale of surveillance technology to such countries.

And Volker Beck, parliamentary leader of the Green Party told the paper, "It is shameful that a German company like Bosch intends to profit from this system." He said firms which sold surveillance and security technology had to be particularly careful where they went.

But Bosch said it was being attacked unfairly, saying it was keeping to all the rules and agreements regarding foreign sales, and thus had, "no basic misgivings about being economically active in China."

A spokesman said the firm was contributing to positive developments in Chinese society and economy - and added that the sales were not being made directly to prisons or authorities, but to electronics dealers. Bosch could not control where the products were later used, the spokesman said.

The Local/hc

The Local (news@thelocal.de)

Don't miss...X
Left Right

Your comments about this article

17:21 December 8, 2012 by raandy
If it isn't Bosch it will be someone else.
05:13 December 9, 2012 by mobiusro
Yeah and in other shocking news, companies are motivated only by profit.
Today's headlines
CDU candidate forced to remove Turkish logo
Yasar Calik. Photo: Facebook/Yasar Calik

CDU candidate forced to remove Turkish logo

A Christian Democrat (CDU) town council candidate has apologized and withdrawn campaign bags on which he had printed a new party logo where the Turkish crescent appeared inside the "C" for Christian. READ () »

Cheap flights get pricier as airlines expand
Lufthansa's daughter company Germanwings is one of the faster-growing budget airlines in Germany. Photo: DPA

Cheap flights get pricier as airlines expand

Budget airlines are expanding their range of routes from Germany but ticket prices are climbing along with them, a report from the German Aeronautics Centre (DLR) revealed on Thursday. READ () »

Ecclestone lawyers: Bribes never happened
Bernie Ecclestone with his lawyers in a Munich court on Thursday morning. Photo: DPA

Ecclestone lawyers: Bribes never happened

UPDATE: Formula One supremo Bernie Ecclestone went on trial in Germany on Thursday, denying charges of bribery that threaten to land the British billionaire in jail. READ () »

Minister praises Erasmus 'success story'
Photo: DPA

Minister praises Erasmus 'success story'

A revamped version of European student exchange programme Erasmus officially launched in Berlin on Thursday with Germany's education minister praising the scheme as a Europe-wide “success story”. READ () »

Turkey tourists lose call to prayer refund bid
Photo: DPA

Turkey tourists lose call to prayer refund bid

A German couple has lost their legal fight to get a refund for a Turkish holiday which they said was ruined by the calls to prayer from a nearby mosque. It is just one of a series of court claims by picky German tourists. READ () »

Germany halts arms sales to Russia
Russian troops surround a Ukrainian base in Crimea. Photo: DPA

Germany halts arms sales to Russia

Germany has stopped selling arms to Russia due to the current “political situation”, according to reports on Thursday. The sale of military equipment to Russia by German firms has been criticized by the country’s Nato allies. READ () »

Truck kills man lying in middle of road
Photo: DPA

Truck kills man lying in middle of road

Police were searching for witnesses on Wednesday morning following a mysterious road accident in which a 25-year-old man was killed as he lay in the middle of the road. READ () »

Where are Germany's smartest towns?
Germany's cleverest town. Photo: DPA

Where are Germany's smartest towns?

A brain training website released scores on Wednesday showing which German towns performed best and worst in a range of cognitive tests - with some surprising results. READ () »

April wraps up with stormy week ahead
Lightning over Lake Starnberg, in Bavaria. Photo: DPA

April wraps up with stormy week ahead

The end of April is looking stormy for Germany with hot and cold air mixing and making for wild spring weather over the coming few days, state forecasters DWD said on Wednesday. READ () »

Germany sold €40 million of arms to Russia
Russian troops pictured in March in Crimea. Photo: DPA

Germany sold €40 million of arms to Russia

Germany arms sales to Russia have come under fire following the crisis in Ukraine. In 2012 Germany sold €40 million worth of rifles, pistols and armoured vehicles to the country. READ () »

RECEIVE OUR NEWSLETTER AND ALERTS
Photo: DPA
National
Girls find live ammunition in Easter bonfire
Photo: Facebook/screenshot
Berlin
Germany's most viral advert for an apartment?
Gallery
11 things you need to know about German beer
Photo: DPA
Politics
Interview with AfD - 'If Britain goes, Europe is lost'
Photo: DPA
National
Police damage own water cannon with eggs
Photo: DPA
National
Let us start work later after World Cup nights, unions says
Photo: DPA
Society
Crystal meth use hits record level
Photo: DPA
Rhineland
Elderly man taped €200,000 to his genitals
Photo: DPA
Business & Money
What's the unemployment rate in your area of Germany?
Photo: Galerie Bilderwelt
Gallery
World War I in colour photos
Photo: DPA
Society
JobTalk: Why you should teach English in Germany
Photo: DPA
National
330,000 sign up against TV licence fee
Advertisement:
Photo: Submitted
Frankfurt
'I'll get even with my old pal Schwarzenegger'
Photo: DPA
Gallery
Ten great inventions you (probably) didn't know were German
Photo: J. Arthur White
Berlin
Clashes in Berlin as refugees tear down their own camp
Photo: DPA
Gallery
The 10 best German employers to work for
CurrencyFair
Sponsored Article
Why it pays to avoid banks when making overseas transfers
Mr. Lodge
Sponsored Article
How to find a furnished rental in Munich
Sponsored Article
How to make a lasting impression in business
Hult International Business School
Sponsored Article
What they don't teach you at Business School
Photo: DPA
Society
Nine jobs you can only do in Germany
Photo: DPA
Business & Money
JobTalk: All you need to know about working in Germany
Photo: DPA
Features
The Local List Archive - Your guide to all things German
National
Share news tips with The Local Germany
Latest news from The Local in Switzerland

More news from Switzerland at thelocal.ch

Latest news from The Local in Spain

More news from Spain at thelocal.es

Latest news from The Local in France

More news from France at thelocal.fr

Latest news from The Local in Italy

More news from Italy at thelocal.it

Latest news from The Local in Norway

More news from Norway at thelocal.no

Latest news from The Local in Sweden

More news from Sweden at thelocal.se

3,077
jobs available
Toytown Germany
Germany's English-speaking crowd