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Chinese documentary filmmaker under murky form of arrest, sister says
Brandon Sun

BEIJING (AP) – A Chinese filmmaker, detained while making a documentary about underground Christians, has been placed under a murky form of arrest in a possible sign police are having trouble building a case against him, his sister said Wednesday.
Since Wu Hao disappeared into police custody Feb. 22, police have refused to release details about charges or let his family see him, saying his case was being kept secret.
Last Friday, the Beijing police division that deals with political criminals summoned Wu’s lawyer to discuss the case and told him the filmmaker had been placed under “supervised residence,” according to a blog kept by his sister, Wu Na.
Chinese authorities often use that form of arrest to hold people at small hotels in isolated locations under constant surveillance. Wu’s lawyer wasn’t told of the filmmaker’s whereabouts, Wu Na said in a telephone interview.
Despite the murkiness of Wu’s situation, it’s one of the few details to have emerged about his case in his two months in custody.
The move may indicate that police “cannot find anything, any evidence against my brother,” Wu Na said. “I think the change from detention to house arrest is good.”
Paris-based rights group Reporters Without Borders cited Wu’s lawyer as saying he’d been told by police that Wu had been moved to a guesthouse run by a state security agency.
Telephones at the Beijing Public Security Bureau were not answered Wednesday evening.
Wu Hao lived in Boston , New York and California for 12 years before returning to China in 2004 to make documentaries. At the time of his detention, he had been working on a film about Christian congregations in China that worship outside the sole, legal state-controlled church.
Wu was also linked to Gao Zhisheng, an outspoken Beijing lawyer who has run afoul of authorities for mounting spirited defences in politically sensitive cases. Earlier this year, he organized a series of fasts to protest violence against dissidents. The whereabouts of several others detained for participating are still unknown.