Actor Shelley Malil has been handed a life sentence for stabbing his ex-girlfriend.

The 45-year-old star - who is best-known for his role as Haziz in Steve Carrell film 'The 40-Year-Old Virgin' - has been sentenced to life in prison after stabbing his ex-girlfriend Kendra Beebe more than 20 times in August 2008.

While his victim survived the attack, a jury convicted the actor of premeditated murder and assault with a deadly weapon after hearing how Shelley launched into the violent crime when he discovered Kendra with another man in her home in San Marcos, California.

She testified: "I stand before the defendant alive. Despite plunging a knife In Me 23 times and trying to kill me, I am alive. Despite the wicked scars he left on my body, I am alive."

Despite the Indian-born star's remorse at the crime, Judge Harry Elias handed him the maximum life sentence, although he is believed to be eligible for parole in approximately 12 years.

Shelley said: "I am at a loss for words right now. I failed miserably, not only as a human being but as a father, son, uncle, brother, friend. What I did to Kendra, I don't have the words to express my remorse."