Anwar Ibrahim. Pic: AP.

KUALA LUMPUR, Malaysia (AP) — Malaysia’s state news agency says an appeals court has found opposition leader Anwar Ibrahim guilty on sodomy charges, overturning his earlier acquittal.

The decision Friday will complicate Ibrahim’s hopes of running in a local election this month in Malaysia’s most populous state.

International human rights groups have condemned the legal moves against Ibrahim as politically motivated.

Anwar is the most potent threat to the government of Prime Minister Najib Razak, whose popular support has weakened over the last two elections.

Anwar’s lawyer was not immediately available for comment.

Media reports said the court would soon announce a sentence against Ibrahim.

He had previously been sentenced to six years in jail but was released on appeal in January 2012.

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