Salman Khan sentenced to five years in prison ...

Salman Khan

Indo-Asian News Service

Jaipur (IANS) A court here Monday sentenced actor Salman Khan to five years' rigorous imprisonment and a fine of Rs.25,000 for killing a chinkara, a protected species of gazelle.

Salman was taken to Jodhpur central jail under judicial custody where he will spend at least two nights before he can file for a bail in the district and sessions court Wednesday because the courts are closed Tuesday due to Mahaveer Jayanti, public prosecutor Jeevan Ram told IANS.

The court of chief judicial magistrate (CJM) B.K. Jain found Salman guilty under Section 51 of the Wildlife Protection Act in a 1998 case.

Jain also convicted Goverdhan, a guard of the Godha farm where the crime is said to have been committed. However, four others were acquitted.

The case relates to the poaching of a chinkara in Ghoda farm near Jodhpur on the night of Sep 28, 1998.

The case was registered against Salman and five others under Sections 143, 144, 148 and 201 read with 149 of the Indian Penal Code, Section 51 and 52 of the Wildlife Protection Act and Section 27 of the Indian Arms Act at Mathania Police Station Oct 11, 1998.

The chief judicial magistrate had heard the defence counsel's argument March 28.
On April 7, he rejected Salman's application for summoning a witness, Harish Dulani, who has missed court appearances for many years.

Dulani was said to be the main witness in the poaching case and reportedly retracted his earlier statement that he had seen the actor killing the animal.

Salman, who faces four poaching cases, was earlier sentenced to one year's imprisonment by the same court Feb 17 for killing a blackbuck.