A lawyer for Algerian journalist Mohamed Tamalt says his client has been sentenced to two years in prison and a 200,000 dinar ($1,800) fine for insulting President Abdelaziz Bouteflika.

Tamalt's sentence is the latest in a series of worrying signs for Algeria's press, which has come under pressure as the country struggles with slumping oil revenues and an ailing head of state.

Amine Sidhoum told The Associated Press the journalist's representatives are appealing the sentence on the grounds that Algerian law forbids punishing journalists for doing their jobs.

Tamalt, a London resident, administers a Facebook page critical of politicians, military brass and their families. He was arrested at his family home in Algeria on June 27 after being put under surveillance.