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Six Sentenced In Armenia Restaurant Killing

A soldier holds a picture of Vahe Avetian during the military doctor's funeral in Yerevan in 2012.
YEREVAN -- Six men have been sentenced to long prison terms after being convicted of beating a military doctor to death in 2012.

Six security guards and other employees of the Harsnakar restaurant were accused of attacking Vahe Avetian and his friends on June 17, 2012.

Avetian died in the hospital of severe head injuries two weeks later.

The incident led to a public uproar as hundreds of people protested at the restaurant and the house of its de-facto owner, Ruben Hayrapetian, a wealthy businessman and lawmaker from Armenia's ruling party.

The outcry forced Hayrapetian to resign from parliament and apologize to Avetian's family.

Each defendant received a 12-year prison sentence and was fined $250.

The verdict angered the defendants' relatives and defense lawyers said they will likely file an appeal with a higher court.