Eric Drouet, the spokesperson and one of the leaders of the Yellow Vests anti-government movement, was arrested during a protest in Paris on Wednesday. Officials say Drouet was charged with organising an undeclared protest.
Footage shows Drouet being taken into custody as protesters chant "dictatorship" and Drouet's name.
Several dozen protesters had reportedly gathered at Paris's Place de la Concorde to leave candles in support of the movement's wounded.
Drouet, who was first arrested last month, already faces charges of carrying a weapon.
The 'Yellow Vest' movement, which started in November, was initially called in response to the French government's planned fuel tax hike. The protests quickly widened into a general expression of anger with the status quo.