Rock star convicted of killing girlfriend out of festivals

FILE - In this March 20 2009 file photo, French rock singer Bertrand Cantat, center, attends the funeral ceremony of French rock singer Alain Bashung

PARIS (AP) — Rock musician Bertrand Cantat, who was convicted of killing his actress girlfriend 15 years ago, has pulled out of the festivals he was scheduled to appear in this summer amid a growing wave of protests.

The 54-year-old Cantat, the leader of former rock band Noir Desir, released a solo album last year and recently started touring. After several dates were canceled by organizers following complaints from women's groups and individuals, Cantat said he took the decision "to put an end to all polemics."

Cantat was sentenced to eight years in prison and served four after beating to death Marie Trintignant during a dispute in a hotel room in Lithuania in 2003.

He said he understands that "being on a festival lineups this summer can pose a problem, hence my decision to withdraw."