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Last Updated: Friday, 17 February 2006, 11:41 GMT
Bollywood star guilty of poaching
Actor Salman Khan is escorted by policemen through a crowd outside Jodhpur District Court in India
Salman Khan is one of Bollywood's biggest stars
Leading Bollywood star Salman Khan has been sentenced to a year in prison after being found guilty of poaching.

Khan was found guilty of killing two blackbucks, a protected species of antelope, in the western state of Rajasthan in 1998.

A lawyer for Salman Khan says his client was "falsely implicated " and will appeal against the conviction.

A BBC correspondent says the actor, who has also been fined 5,000 rupees ($111) has a month's time to appeal.

Seven other people were acquitted over the case.

Charges against Khan were pressed by the local Bishnoi community in Rajasthan where the killing took place.

It's disturbing. It's disappointing
Dipesh Mehta
Salman Khan's lawyer

The community, many of whose members were present outside the court, worships the animal and have welcomed Khan's conviction.

Khan attended the court hearing in the Rajasthan city of Jodhpur, some 480km (300 miles) south-west of the capital Delhi.

"It's disturbing, it's disappointing," a lawyer for the actor, Dipesh Mehta, told the BBC.

"[Khan] was mentally prepared for it, we were ready for any eventuality."

Fans of the Bollywood star had gathered outside the court hoping to catch a glimpse of the star and raised slogans in his favour before they were dispersed by the police.

Bollywood's 'bad boy'

Last month, Khan had voiced his frustration at the lengthy trial which has lasted seven years.

"The court can hang me. I am tired of such lengthy proceedings," Khan told the court.

The 40-year-old, who has a reputation for reckless behaviour, is one of Bollywood's top actors.

The poaching case is not the actor's first brush with the law. He is also facing trial in Mumbai (Bombay) in a 2002 hit-and-run case.

One person was killed and three others injured when Khan allegedly drove into a group of homeless people sleeping on a pavement.

Khan faces 10 charges, including causing death by negligent driving which carries two years in prison. He has pleaded not guilty on all counts.





SEE ALSO:
Bollywood star's court outburst
12 Jan 06 |  South Asia
'Hair op' kept actor from court
15 Dec 05 |  South Asia
Bollywood star's bail cancelled
12 Dec 05 |  South Asia
Actor cleared of 'mafia boasts'
16 Sep 05 |  South Asia
Salman Khan: Troubled star
07 Oct 02 |  South Asia


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