Uganda's parliament shelved its notorious anti-gay bill on May 13, 2011. Here members of the Ugandan gay community attend the funeral of murdered gay activist David Kato on January 28, 2011. Although the police claimed Kato's killing was the result of a petty robbery, many members of the gay and the human rights community charge the murder was a hate crime, a result of the climate of intolerance toward gays that grew because of the anti-homosexuality bill.
Credit: Marc Hofer

The man who killed leading gay rights activist David Kato has been convicted by a court in Uganda and sentenced to 30 years in prison.

Ugandan Sidney Nsubunga Enoch told the court that he had no option but to beat Kato to death with a hammer because the gay activist had propositioned him, BBC reported.

The court disagreed and gave him three decades in prison for the crime.

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Kato, a school teacher, was killed shortly after a local newspaper ran the names and photographs of members of the community who are gay under the banner, "Hang Them," the Associated Press reported.

Homosexuality is illegal in Uganda, like in many African countries, and the case sparked international outcry and demands by world leaders and donor groups that the government legalize the practice.

The New York Times wrote after Kato's death that Uganda is on the "front lines" of the battle in Africa over homosexuality.

Conservative Christian groups that espouse antigay beliefs have made great headway in this country and wield considerable influence. Uganda’s minister of ethics and integrity, James Nsaba Buturo, who describes himself as a devout Christian, has said, “Homosexuals can forget about human rights.”

At the same time, American groups that defend gay rights have also poured money into Uganda to help the beleaguered gay community.

President Obama came out against a bill that was in Uganda's parliament that would have made homesexuality by some groups like teenagers punishable by the death penalty.

Gay activists have blamed evangelical preachers for increased levels of homophobia in the country, AP reported.

More from GlobalPost: Is this the end of Uganda's anti-gay law?

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