Bollywood's Salman Khan gets jail term for hit-and-run: 5 other famous stars jailed for serious crimes

Salman Khan leaving court after getting two days' interim bail from Bombay High Court, in Mumbai, India, on May 6, 2015. -- PHOTO: EPA
Salman Khan leaving court after getting two days' interim bail from Bombay High Court, in Mumbai, India, on May 6, 2015. -- PHOTO: EPA

SINGAPORE - Bollywood superstar Salman Khan was sentenced on Wednesday to five years in prison for a 2002 hit-and-run which killed a homeless man.

The 49-year-old was convicted of culpable homicide on charges that he lost control of his white Toyota Landcruiser when driving under the influence of alcohol, and rammed into a group of people sleeping on a pavement.

Khan's conviction - he can still appeal the verdict in a higher court - adds to a list of famous stars who have been jailed for serious offences.

Here are five other celebrities who have spent time, or are currently, behind bars.

Oscar Pistorius

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At the height of his fame, the South African sprinter dubbed "Blade Runner" was a 2012 Olympian, the first amputee to win an able-bodied track medal at the 2011 Athletics World Championships and a world record holder at the Paralympics.

But his world came crashing down on Valentine's Day in 2013, when he fatally shot his model girlfriend, Reeva Steenkamp, in his home in Pretoria. In a trial that attracted global coverage, he admitted to have shot Steenkamp but claimed that he mistook her for an intruder.

The 28-year-old was given a five-year jail term for culpable homicide, as well as a three-year suspended sentence for a separate conviction on reckless endangerment, on Oct 21 last year.

Sanjay Dutt

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The prominent Indian actor and film producer has had a long and chequered history of illegal arms possession and links to terrorist-related activities.

Having been in and out of prison since 1993 when he was implicated in the Mumbai serial bombings that year, Dutt's five-year term at Pune's Yerwada jail for illegal possession of a pistol and an assault rifle was finally upheld in March 2013.

Mike Tyson

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Regarded as one of boxing's biggest ever stars, Tyson was arrested in July 1991 for the rape of 18-year-old college student and beauty pageant contestant Desiree Washington.

The former boxing heavyweight champion was found guilty and sentenced to 10 years in prison in March the following year. He served three years before he was granted parole.

Tyson's prison stint was colourful - he converted to Islam and claimed to have sex with female prison visitors and even a prison drug counsellor in his autobiography, Undisputed Truth.

Robert Downey Jr

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The tale of how a drug-addled Robert Downey Jr turned his life around to become one of Hollywood's best-paid actors is a well-known one.

The Oscar nominee, who shot to superstardom playing the Marvel character Iron Man, said he had been a drug addict since he was eight. He served one year of a three-year sentence at the California Substance Abuse Treatment Facility and State Prison in 1999 after missing a required drug test during his probation for drug-related charges.

In an interview with the New York Times, he maintained that he has been drug-free since 2003.

Mark Wahlberg

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Wahlberg's troubled youth in Boston, during which he made a living on the streets stealing and selling drugs, culminated in the savage beating of a Vietnamese man that many believed was racially-motivated.

The then-16-year-old was handed a two-year jail term but spent only 45 days behind bars. Accusations of being a racist continued to plague Wahlberg even as he went on to forge a successful career as a rapper, underwear model and critically-acclaimed actor.

mklee@sph.com.sg

Sources: New York Times, The Daily Mail, BBC, Biography.com, The Times of India, AFP, Reuters