Ai Weiwei lost his appeal in his high-profile tax case on Friday, prompting the artist to speak out yet again against the Chinese government. A court in Beijing upheld an approximately $2.4-million fine for tax evasion against the artist.
The tax fine had been imposed against Ai's company, Beijing Fake Cultural Development. Supporters of the artist believe that the fine is an attempt by Chinese officials to penalize Ai for his online political activism and fight for free speech.
Ai told reporters Friday that the Chinese legal system "still has no respect for the truth, still will never give taxpayers and citizens an ability to justify themselves." He added that the system is "shrouded in darkness."
The rejection by the court had been widely expected. Ai told journalists that he will continue to appeal the case. Supporters around the world have sent donations to the artist to aid his legal fight.