Europe

Train dispatcher in Germany jailed over crash that killed 12

FILE - In this Feb. 9, 2016 file photo rescue teams work at the site where two trains collided head-on near Bad Aibling, Germany, killing twelve people and injuring 89. On Monday, Dec. 5, 2016 the train dispatcher was sentenced to 3 years and six months in prison because of negligence that led to one of the worst train crashes in German history this year.  (AP Photo/Matthias Schrader, file)

FILE - In this Feb. 9, 2016 file photo rescue teams work at the site where two trains collided head-on near Bad Aibling, Germany, killing twelve people and injuring 89. On Monday, Dec. 5, 2016 the train dispatcher was sentenced to 3 years and six months in prison because of negligence that led to one of the worst train crashes in German history this year. (AP Photo/Matthias Schrader, file)  (The Associated Press)

A train dispatcher in Germany has been convicted of negligent homicide and bodily harm over his role in the collision of two commuter trains in Bavaria earlier this year that killed 12 people. He has been sentenced to 3 ½ years in prison.

The dispatcher, identified only as Michael P. in line with German privacy laws, has admitted playing a game on his phone shortly before the two trains he was in charge of collided on a single-track line on Feb. 9 near Bad Aibling, about 60 kilometers (40 miles) southeast of Munich. He then hit the wrong signal buttons.

News agency dpa reported that prosecutors sought a four-year sentence, while the defense called for two years at most. The state court in Traunstein delivered its verdict Monday.