Ai Weiwei Accused of (Though Still Not Charged With) Tax Evasion

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May 20 2011 11:17 AM

Ai Weiwei Accused of (Though Still Not Charged With) Tax Evasion

China's official Xinhua news agency has reported that the Beijing police have reported that a company run by dissident artist Ai Weiwei—who was taken into custody without explanation in early April—"was found to have evaded 'a huge amount' of tax."

The Beijing Fake Cultural Development Ltd. was also found to have intentionally destroyed accounting documents, the police authorities told Xinhua, citing an initial investigation.
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The police also described Ai's detention as "residence surveillance"—though the artist is not under house arrest, but being held somewhere undisclosed. Ai's wife, Lu Qing, was

him for the first time this past Sunday, at "a location she did not recognize," but was not permitted to discuss the case with him. And despite today's claims about tax evasion, formal charges against Ai have yet to announced; the

for detention without charges passed

.


Tom Scocca is the managing editor of Deadspin and the author of Beijing Welcomes You: Unveiling the Capital City of the Future.

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