Dissident Chinese Artist Ai Weiwei Will Fight Large Tax Bill
Ai Weiwei at his home in Beijing on Tuesday. Photo: Ng Han Guan/Associated Press
Ai Weiwei, the artist and political dissident, has decided to contest an unpaid tax assessment of about $2.4 million that is due on Tuesday, and he will use donations from thousands of Chinese supporters for the appeal, Mr. Ai’s wife said Friday.
Mr. Ai’s wife, Lu Qing, said he would post a guarantee of half the tax bill to be allowed to contest the order to pay it. “We demand the case be reopened because all procedures were wrong and most were illegal,” Ms. Lu said in a telephone interview, referring to the lengthy investigation of her husband.
One of China’s most famous artists, Mr. Ai was detained in April and held for 81 days at a secret location. There, he said, questioners interrogated him about his activism, not about his finances. The government later announced that he was guilty of tax evasion and gave him until Nov. 15 to pay the back taxes it said he owed, plus large penalties.
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