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Sutherland starts 48-day jail term

1 of 1 Sutherland - 24 star chose to begin jail immediately
Sutherland - 24 star chose to begin jail immediately

'24' star Kiefer Sutherland has begun serving his 48-day jail term for a drink-driving offence and parole violation.

Reuters reports that the 40-year-old actor will serve the 48 days consecutively rather than in two periods as was originally planned.

This plan was to prevent a conflict in the show's production schedule, but with the writers' strike continuing in Hollywood, there was no longer the need for Sutherland to serve his sentence in two parts.

The actor was arrested in September while on probation for a 2004 drink-driving offence.

In October, he pleaded no contest to a single count of driving with a blood alcohol level above the legal limit.

A deal was reached where he would serve 30 days for the new offence and 18 days for violating his probation in the 2004 case.

Los Angeles County Superior Court Judge Stuart Rice endorsed the deal yesterday and gave the actor until 30 March to complete his jail term.

But Sutherland's lawyer, Blair Berk, told Reuters that the star had decided to begin serving his sentence immediately.

Sutherland was also placed on probation for five years, fined $510 and must enrol in an alcohol education programme and attend counselling sessions.

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