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In this paper, we develop an approach toward joint source-channel coding (JSCC) for JPEG compressed image transmission. First, a data partition (DP) technique is employed to divide the JPEG bitstream into three groups, namely, Huffman codes, DC coefficients and AC coefficients. Second, we combine the rate-compatible punctured convolutional (RCPC) codes to protect the coded data according to channel conditions. The proposed scheme utilizes universal rate distortion characteristics, which are obtained experimentally and show the sensitivity of the source encoder and decoder to channel errors. Simulation results demonstrate a significant improvement in subjective and objective quality of the received images in an error-prone environment.