China's leading activist Xu Zhiyong

Supporters of Xu Zhiyong shout slogans near a court where Xu's trial is being held, in Beijing

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Relatives of top Chinese leaders including President Xi Jinping and former premier Wen Jiabao have used offshore tax havens to hide their wealth, according to a mammoth investigation released on Wednesday.

The International Consortium of Investigative Journalists (ICIJ), citing information culled from 2.5 million leaked documents, said that Xi's brother-in-law and Wen's son and son-in-law were among those with offshore holdings.

The release came on the same day that China put leading activist Xu Zhiyong on trial for his part in protests calling for officials to disclose their assets. (AFP)

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