Bollywood actor Sanjay Dutt hopes to complete his movie assignments and spend time with his family as he waits for a court to sentence him in an illegal arms possession case, a newspaper reported Thursday.
Dutt has been out on bail since 1995 after spending 18 months following his arrest for the unauthorized possession of three assault rifles and a pistol, allegedly supplied by a key suspect accused in the March 1993 Mumbai bombings that killed 257 people. He was convicted of the charge in November.
Dutt was acquitted of a more serious charge of conspiracy in the bombing case _ described as India's worst-ever terror strike _ when a series of bombs tore through the country's financial capital, Mumbai, nearly 14 years ago.
The court is hearing arguments from the attorneys of 100 accused suspects in the case, and is expected to announce the sentences in two to three months. Twenty-three other suspects have been acquitted.
Dutt faces a maximum of 10 years in prison. His lawyers argued last month for a short prison term, since the actor has already served 18 months in jail.
Dutt's attorneys would be able to appeal his conviction after the court hands down a sentence.
The Mumbai Mirror newspaper quoted Dutt as saying that he has become less agitated about his fate as the case draws to a close.
"My mind is far less restless now. I hope and pray this year my legal troubles will end," he said. "I want to start my life on a fresh note. My career, family and my personal life have suffered enough."
He is currently shooting an action thriller, "Shootout At Lokhandwala," in which he plays a police officer.
Dutt said he has also signed contracts for two other movies, "Munnabhai 3," a sequel to "Keep At It, Munnabhai," and "Alibaug."
Dutt's most recent movie, "Lage Raho Munnabhai," or "Keep At It, Munnabhai," was one of Bollywood's biggest hits of 2006. He played a thug attempting to follow the teachings of Mohandas K. Gandhi, who led India's freedom struggle against its former British colonial rulers.