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Wednesday 18 October 2017

Vanessa Hudgens faces fine or court hearing over 'rock carving'

The image appeared on the Instagram account of Vanessa Hudgens
The image appeared on the Instagram account of Vanessa Hudgens

US authorities say actress Vanessa Hudgens can either pay a fine or appear in court for allegedly defacing a natural feature by carving a loveheart into red rock in Sedona, Arizona, two months ago.

Hudgens posted a photo of the carving, bearing the names Vanessa and Austin, on her Instagram account around St Valentine's Day.

The image was brought to the attention of the Coconino National Forest, which manages land around Sedona renowned for its towering red rocks.

Damaging a natural feature on US Forest Service land is a misdemeanour punishable by up to six months in jail and a maximum 5,000 US dollar (£3,500) fine.

Forest Service officials said they contacted Hudgens, who "was cooperative in providing the specific location" of the carving.

They referred the investigation results to the US Attorney's Office in Flagstaff, which set a potential hearing date and contacted Hudgens.

Authorities said her options are to accept the agreement and pay an undisclosed fine and restitution or appear in court to answer to the misdemeanour violations of defacing or damaging natural features.

Hudgens, 27, is best known for her role as Gabriella Montez in the High School Musical television show and movie.

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