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Last Updated: Friday, 13 October 2006, 09:07 GMT 10:07 UK
China lawyer held for incitement
This file photo dated 02 November 2005 shows Gao Zhisheng, the head of the Beijing-based Zhisheng Legal Office,
Mr Gao is well known for handling politically sensitive cases
An outspoken Chinese rights lawyer is being investigated for allegedly inciting subversion, his lawyer says.

Gao Zhisheng was formally arrested in September and his lawyer, Mo Shaoping, said he had only recently been told of the charges his client faced.

His family say they have been denied permission to see him since he was detained in Beijing, in August.

Earlier this year, Mr Gao organised a protest over what he called widespread police brutality against activists.

His clients have included members of the banned spiritual organisation Falun Gong, members of an underground church, and those who complain they have lost land to the authorities.

Mr Mo said Mr Gao had been formally arrested on 21 September "on suspicion of inciting subversion of state power".

Mr Mo told Reuters news agency he was not informed of the move by the authorities and had to go to prosecutors to learn about the charges his client faces.

The police investigation could take several months before a decision is taken over whether the case should come to trial, he said.

Mr Gao's arrest is one of several involving human rights lawyers and activists in recent months, and is believed to be part of a wider crackdown in China on human rights campaigners.

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