A Paris court has convicted a 23-year-old man of attacking and injuring a photographer who had taken photos of a group of women who were breaking a new French law by wearing face-covering veils.

The court sentenced Ymad Bilel Benouahab on Monday to 18 months in prison, six of them suspended, for the September attack on a 65-year-old photographer in a largely Muslim neighborhood in eastern Paris, the Sipa news agency reported. The photographer's nose and arm were broken.

Benouahab said he was angry, but acknowledged he was in the wrong.

Prosecutor Fanny Huboux says the case was about the attack, not the head scarf law. She says, "we're not here to judge religious convictions."

France banned wearing face-covering veils in public last year, sparking anger from Islamic groups.