The defence lawyer representing a pedicurist who killed an official in Hubei has asked prosecutors to look for what he believes is crucial evidence of attempted rape. 'I'm in the chief prosecutor's office right now asking him to authorise an investigation into some key evidence,' Xia Lin , the lawyer for Deng Yujiao, said before he had to hang up his phone. 'I think I am safe for the time being.' Mr Xia said he was held temporarily in a police station last night but refused to give further details. Earlier in the day, Mr Xia was able to meet Deng. Her family told sources that they had been threatened with detention if they insisted on pursuing the case. The evidence Mr Xia referred to is the waitress' bra and underwear, which were torn in the incident but have been ignored by police. The woman stabbed to death Deng Guida, who was head of a business promotion office in Yesanguan town, on May 10 after she refused to provide him and his two subordinates with 'special services', a euphemism for sex. The incident triggered a public outcry on the mainland as it has once again shed light on official corruption and immorality, while the pedicurist was hailed as an example of the struggling underprivileged class. There was uproar after she was detained for intentionally causing death even though many believed she had acted in self-defence. Initial police investigations showed the officials had humiliated the woman with a stash of banknotes and twice tried to push her to a sofa before she produced a fruit knife, stabbing Deng Guida five times and injuring one of his subordinates. Pu Zhiqiang, a lawyer from Beijing, noted that if the evidence was submitted, it would create a strong case for self-defence. The public have little sympathy for the dead man as they are fed up with official misconduct. Many netizens said the case had made a mockery of provincial officials' push last month for clean government.