DUBAI: A Bahraini court sentenced a US citizen of Arab origin to 10 years in prison Tuesday for attempting to murder policemen last year, his lawyer said.
Taqi al-Meydan, 25, was also convicted of burning a police vehicle and taking part in a street protest, said Mohamed al-Jishi.
The court also jailed two other defendants for 10 years on similar charges.
Meydan was arrested in October 2012 during a demonstration in a Shiite village near Manama and pleaded innocent to the charges, Jishi said.
He will appeal the verdict, which the lawyer said was "unexpected because the evidence against him is very weak."
Meydan, born in 1988 in the United States to a Saudi father and Bahraini mother, moved to Bahrain after completing his education in the United States.
In August, King Hamad decreed stiffer penalties for "terror acts" in the country rocked by a Shiite-led uprising since 2011.
These include a minimum 10-year jail term for an attempted bombing. If casualties result, the sentence can be life imprisonment or death.
The Shiite opposition is calling for a demonstration on Friday, following the arrest last week of former opposition MP Khalil Marzooq, accused of links to Shiite "extremists."
Shiite demonstrators have kept up protests despite a March 2011 crackdown that sparked repeated clashes with security forces.
At least 89 people have been killed since protests erupted two years ago, according to the International Federation for Human Rights.
Strategically located across the Gulf from Shiite Iran, Bahrain is home to the US Navy's Fifth Fleet and is an offshore financial and services centre for its oil-rich Arab neighbours in the Gulf.