SAO PAULO (Reuters) - A rancher in Brazil's Amazon was sentenced to 30 years in prison for ordering the 2005 killing of American nun and environmental activist Dorothy Stang, an emblematic case for the many conflicts over land use in Brazil's resource-rich interior.
The courtroom was overflowing with Stang's supporters when Vitalmiro Bastos Moura, 43, was declared guilty just before midnight Thursday, the court in Para state said in a statement.
Fellow activists fiercely criticized Brazil's judiciary system as moving too slowly and being too lenient in its response to the murder of the 73-year-old Roman Catholic nun.
Stang was shot six times outside the small town of Anapu, where she worked as an advocate for landless peasants. She often criticized cattle ranchers for seizing land illegally and destroying the rainforest.
It was Bastos' fourth trial in the Stang killing as he had appealed previous verdicts. Another local landowner, Regivaldo Galvão, was found guilty of ordering Stang's death, but was granted a conditional release by the Supreme Court in 2012.