- "Because there is rampant poaching...," said judge, explaining decision
- Salman Khan was sentenced to 5 years in prison for killing 2 blackbucks
- He was directly taken to Jodhpur Central Jail from the court
"The way the accused killed two innocent black bucks in violation of the wildlife laws...he is a film star, people emulate him and look up to him... and there has been a rise in poaching incidents, so leniency is not justified given the severity of the crime, the evidence and the circumstances," said the judge, explaining his decision.
Four other Bollywood stars, Saif Ali Khan, Sonali Bendre, Tabu and Neelam Kothari, were acquitted for lack of evidence. The stars were shooting for a film near Jodhpur when the hunt took place. Salman Khan was accused by witnesses of spotting a herd of blackbucks and shooting dead two.
Known for his tough guy roles in Hindi films, Salman Khan had denied shooting the antelopes and had accused the state's forest department of framing him over the black buck case.
He was cleared in 2015 of killing a homeless man in a hit-and-run accident in 2002. That decision is now being challenged in the Supreme Court.
Salman Khan's conviction hits the Hindi film industry hard as his films in recent years have been mostly been blockbusters. Around Rs 600 crore rides on the star, one of the most bankable in Bollywood.
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