Olympiacos star Youssef El-Arabi handed three-year prison sentence for involvement in attack on two teenage boys

OLYMPIACOS star Youssef El-Arabi has been handed a three-year prison sentence for his part in beating up two teenage boys.

The Morocco international, 34, has helped his side win the last two Greek league titles.

Striker El-Arabi has scored in his club's last three Europa League clashes with Arsenal, including their 1-0 win at the Emirates in March.

But the former Caen and Granada ace must now serve a minimum 12 months in jail after a French judge found him guilty of assault.

The court at Montpellier sentenced El-Arabi in his absence last week with the player on Greek Cup final duty with Olympiacos.

However the 49-cap international's two brothers and his brother-in law appeared at the hearing.

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All four received three-year jail terms, with 24 months suspended.  They were fined a total of £5,500 and ordered to pay their victims £12,000 compensation.

The trial heard two boys of 13 and 16 threw a bottle at El-Arabi's family as they celebrated the end of Ramadan on a garden patio in June 2017.

The jury was told the player and his three male relatives chased and beat the youngsters, leaving one with a damaged eye.

The teenagers were then reportedly forced to clear up the broken glass, sworn at and humiliated.

One witness told the court: "I saw the boys curled up on the ground to protect themselves against being hit."

El-Arabi is said to have told police: "I gave one of them a slap to calm him down."

His brothers told the hearing they had not caused the boys any bruising or bloodshed.

The El-Arabis' lawyer Christian Dumont said: "They were annoyed.  They couldn't understand why their victims had acted this way.

"They feared one of their children might be hit in the face by a bottle, and thought they had come under attack."

The quartet could yet appeal to have their prison stays commuted to community service.

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