Chinese court rejects appeal from dissident artist

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The Independent Online

A court has upheld a 15m yuan (£1.5m) fine for tax evasion against the dissident Ai Weiwei. Police had barring him from attending the court to hear the verdict, in a case that critics accuse Beijing of using to muzzle the outspoken artist.

The tax office imposed the fine last year on Beijing Fake Cultural Development.Ai is a designer for the company, but his wife is its legal representative. He argued that the fine was politically motivated, and had asked the court to overturn it.

Ai said the verdict "shows that this country still has no basic legal process".