CHINA has been given 40 days to supply evidence to the Macau Supreme Court backing its claim that two Hong Kong men and a Malaysian have committed offences on the mainland. The three were arrested in Macau on international warrants up to two years ago and have been at the centre of a struggle against their extradition to China where they face the death penalty. This month, the men, who had been held without charge, learned that extradition requests from China had been rejected. The Portuguese Constitutional Court in Lisbon ruled their extradition would be unconstitutional. The men's lawyer, Pedro Redinha, said yesterday the men had appeared in court on Wednesday after the Criminal Instruction Court issued warrants for them. Yeung Yuk-yeung and Lei Ch'an-wa were remanded in custody on a murder and a drug trafficking charge respectively. Both men are from Hong Kong. Leong Cheng-meng, who carries a Malaysian passport, is charged with vehicle theft. All three pleaded not guilty. Macau authorities are investigating the validity of the Malaysian passport held by mainland-born Leong. Mr Redinha said if China did not provide complete evidence briefs to the Macau prosecutors within a 40-day period he would immediately seek their unconditional release. He holds deep concerns that if the men are forced to stay in Macau they could be 'spirited' to the mainland. Australian-Chinese businessman James Peng Jiandong was snatched from a Macau hotel room in 1993 and taken to China without extradition proceedings where he was convicted last month of corruption charges and sentenced to 18 years' jail. Macau, as a Portuguese enclave has a separate legal system from Portugal but is subject to Portuguese constitutional law, which bars extradition to countries which use the death penalty.