Former Israeli prime minister Ehud Olmert has been sentenced to six years in prison for taking bribes.

The corruption case has resulted in the first criminal conviction of a former head of government in Israel.

Olmert, who is credited internationally with working towards a peace settlement with the Palestinians, had denied wrongdoing in a property deal that took place while he was in his previous post of Jerusalem mayor.

His lawyers are expected to ask the Tel Aviv court that passed sentence to allow the 68-year-old to remain free until the Supreme Court rules on an appeal against his conviction.

That process could take months.

Two years ago, the veteran politician was acquitted of most of the major charges brought against him in separate cases involving his links to a US businessman.

Those corruption allegations forced Olmert's resignation as prime minister in 2008.

His acquittal had appeared to position him for a possible political comeback.

However, Judge David Rozen found Olmert guilty of two bribery charges in the new corruption trial.

The judge said he accepted 500,000 shekels (€105,000) from developers of the Holyland apartment building complex in Jerusalem and 60,000 shekels (€12,600) in a separate property project.