Ai Weiwei Speaks Out Against Chinese Judicial System
by: Kate Messinger
September 27, 2012
Sculptor and activist Ai Weiwei is not backing down against the Chinese government, refusing to pay the rest his $2.4 million fine for tax evasion (and again ignoring his social media prohibition by posting the above photo to Instgram last night).
Ai was arrested in Beijing 2011 and held without charge for almost three months; now he is claiming that the tax authority acted illegally when pursuing the allegations. The artist has already payed 1.33 million towards the fine with the help of his supporters donating over a million dollars towards his bond, but since the court has rejected Ai’s appeal of the charges, he believes he shouldn’t pay the remaining fee.
Ai and his company, Fake Cultural Development Ltd, claim that the tax bureau acted against regulations when handeling witnesses and gathering evidence. In addition, the court withheld Ai’s passport for a year and has yet to return it, even though his probation was lifted in June.
Ai’s fight against the Chinese court system has brought attention to the injustices in the law, resulting in a new documentary about Ai’s art and activism called Ai Weiwei: Never Sorry. Ai has gained supporters from all over the world and continues to work as a sculptor with shows in New York, Berlin and Washington.
Related: Never Sorry