A Czech court has convicted a Polish truck driver of being responsible for last year's collision between a truck and a high-speed train that killed three passengers and sentenced him to 8 1/2 years in prison.

The county court in Novy Jicin on Wednesday also banned Slawomir Sondaj from driving on Czech territory for 10 years.

The crash occurred at a rail crossing in the eastern town of Studenka on July 22 as the train was traveling from Bohumin to the western spa of Frantiskovy Lazne. The truck driver escaped unharmed. He entered the crossing despite warnings from flashing red lights.

In addition to the dead, some 20 people were injured in the crash.