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US court finds OJ Simpson guilty
Football star convicted of robbery, 13 years after being cleared of twin murders.
Last Modified: 04 Oct 2008 12:36 GMT
Simpson faces a maximum penalty
of life imprisonment [AFP]

OJ Simpson, the former American football star who was famously cleared of a double murder in 1995, has been found guilty of robbery and kidnapping.

Simpson was sent to jail, along with co-defendant Clarence Stewart, immediately after the verdict on Friday, exactly 13 years after he was acquitted of killing his ex-wife and her friend. 

Simpson and Stewart both face mandatory five year sentences with a possibility of a maximum sentence of life imprisonment.

The 61-year-old former sportsman and film star was accused of storming into a hotel room at the Palace Station casino in Las Vegas with a number of armed men before seizing sports memorabilia from two dealers.

Simpson, who did not testify during his trial, said in interviews after his arrest he had been recovering personal items stolen from his trophy room, and said he was unaware that the men with him were armed.

But four of the accomplices agreed plea deals and testified against Simpson.

Prosecutors said two of the men with him were armed and one of those men said Simpson asked him to bring a gun.

Trial overshadowed

Simpson showed little emotion as officers handcuffed him and walked him out of the courtroom while Carmelita Durio, his sister, sobbed behind him.

Las Vegas police officers were heard in the recordings chuckling over Simpson's misfortune and crowing that if Los Angeles had failed to "get" him, they would.

During jury selection, Simpson's lawyers expressed fears that people who believed he got away with murder might see this case as a chance to put him behind bars.

Thomas Riccio, a memorabilia dealer who arranged and secretly recorded the hotel-room confrontation, said he made $210,000 from the media for the tapes.

Source:
Agencies
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