The Chinese dissident blogger He Weihua has been confined in a psychiatric hospital in a detention his family blames on his criticism of the government, a press freedom group said Friday.
“It is unacceptable that the Chinese authorities use such methods to silence citizens who have just expressed their views peacefully online,” Reporters Without Borders said. “How can the authorities expect us to believe that a mentally ill person is capable of detailed investigative reporting?”

Prosecutors have charged environmental activist Wu Lihong with extortion from industrial plants that he accused of polluting Taihu Lake in eastern China’s Jiangsu province, state media said on Wednesday. The prosecutors in Jiangsu’s Yixing city accused Wu, who was once nominated as one of China’s top 10 environmentalists, of extorting 55,000 yuan (6,875 dollars) by threatening to expose the plants’ pollution, the official Xinhua news agency said. The agency quoted prosecutors as saying Wu’s diary listed “blackmail targets and showed amounts of money he had planned to extort from each factory or enterprise.

The Yixing court had not set a date for the trial of Wu, 39, who had fought for years against the pollution of Taihu.
Water supplies from the lake had to be cut to 2 million people in nearby Wuxi city in late May because excessive pollution had promoted the growth of a pungent blue-green algae.