Detained mafia bosses in Chongqing have hired prominent lawyers from outside the city in an apparent attempt to minimise political interference and ensure that they get impartial legal advice as the second round of trials started this month. Yang Kuangsheng, a Beijing-based lawyer who worked for the Supreme Procuratorate for 10 years before entering private practice in 1998, will defend Wen Qiang, the former municipal Judicial Bureau chief and also the top official brought down by the crackdown, The Beijing News reported. Quoting people it called knowledgeable, the report said Yang had flown to Chongqing to meet Wen, though no details about the meeting were given. In an apparent bid to keep him away from his connections in the city, Wen was taken to neighbouring Guizhou province . Yang told the paper on Saturday that even though he was Wen's legal representative, he had not been told when and where the trial would be conducted. At least 2,900 suspects, including 14 triad bosses and scores of local officials, have been detained for their roles in the city's rampant underworld activities since the far-reaching campaign began in late June. The report also said numerous Beijing lawyers besides Yang would represent several other suspected Chongqing mafia kingpins. Xu Lanting - a lawyer well known for his defence of Mu Suixin, the former mayor of Shenyang, Liaoning province, and his deputy, Ma Xiangdong, in late 2001 - confirmed to the paper he had been retained to represent Chen Mingliang . Xuan Dong, another Beijing lawyer, said he was another legal representative for Chen's syndicate. Chen, along with his partner Ma Dang, was allegedly the most powerful triad boss who had illicitly amassed fortunes of hundreds of millions of yuan by running underground casinos and nightclubs in Chongqing's most prosperous Yuzhong district under the protection of Wen, who had also been the deputy head of the Public Security Bureau in the city for about 16 years. It appeared more defendants were hiring lawyers outside Chongqing after more than 10 local lawyers had gained bad reputations for their links to mafia-like activities. Other Chongqing lawyers were condemned by internet users for being 'evil advisers for organised crime'. Some lawyers were trying to keep a low profile. One declined a request for an interview, saying he was under huge pressure and strictly prohibited from talking to overseas media. Zhou Litai, a lawyer based in Chongqing, reiterated that it was his obligation to defend the lawful rights of his clients, even though he said he supported the mafia crackdown. The reasons for hiring lawyers outside of Chongqing were obvious, a law professor said. 'It would be easier for lawyers from other places to carry out their obligations as a result of being free of pressure and interference exerted by regional government,' Ong Yew-kim, a Hong Kong-based China law professor with the China University of Political Science and Law, said. Even so, lawyers had complained that local authorities had made their jobs difficult. Xiao Ying, the lawyer representing Deng Yuping, the right-hand man of triad boss Chen Zhiyi, told the paper she was allowed to meet her client only shortly before the opening of his trial last week. Zhao Changqing, a law professor and the lawyer for triad kingpin Li Qiang, said he was given only a few sheets of paper before the trial of his client while the prosecutors had prepared documents with half a million words and ample evidence. Others complained they had been deprived of rights to both see their clients and read files in connection with the cases, which Ong said was a violation of criminal procedure. 'The lawyers are ... entitled to access to all documents, including the indictment, and evidence in relation to the cases in which their clients are involved,' Ong said.