24 Dec 2009

Prominent dissident on trial in China

6:07 am on 24 December 2009

Writer Liu Xiaobo, one of the most prominent dissidents in China, has gone on trial in Beijing on charges of subversion.

Liu is a veteran of the Tiananmen Square democracy protests in 1989. He was arrested again in December 2008, after he co-authored a document known as Charter 08.

If convicted, he could be sent to prison for up to 15 years.

The BBC reports he has been in jail since 2008, after being arrested for writing a document calling for political reform. A verdict is expected on Friday.

Liu's wife, Liu Xia, previously said she had "no hope whatsoever" for the outcome. She told reporters she was not allowed to enter the court.