- Associated Press - Thursday, February 23, 2012

BUCHAREST, ROMANIA (AP) - A court in Romania has given a five-year prison sentence to the man accused of fatally beating American basketball player Chauncey Hardy in a bar last year.

The court sentenced Ionut Adrian Tanasoaia late Wednesday. The ruling can be appealed.

Prosecutors said Tanasoaia punched Hardy on Oct. 9 in a bar in the southern town of Giurgiu, where the American was playing for the local team. Hardy fell on the floor, suffering severe brain injuries and two neck fractures. The 23-year-old basketball player died after surgery in a Bucharest hospital.

Hardy played basketball at Sacred Heart University in Fairfield, Conn.

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