AC/DC's Rudd gets home detention for threatening to kill

Reuters News
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Posted: Jul 08, 2015 9:08 PM

WELLINGTON (Reuters) - Phil Rudd, the Australian-born drummer from world-famous rock band AC/DC, was sentenced to eight months home detention in a New Zealand court on Thursday after pleading guilty to charges of threatening to kill and possession of drugs.

Rudd, 61, has been on bail since his arrest last November and pleaded guilty in April to the charges, which carried a maximum sentence of seven years in jail.

The prosecution asked for a minimum jail term of 18 months.

Rudd will be allowed authorized visits during his home detention but will also be monitored electronically.

Rudd's lawyer told the court his client had been under stress at the time of the offence and under the influence of drugs, and described the incident as just an angry phone call.

He said a conviction might result in Rudd losing tens of millions of dollars in future earnings, and asked for a discharge without conviction.

The judge however said the incident was more than an angry phone call and that Rudd had been found with a substantial amount of drugs. However, he accepted that Rudd had reconciled with the target of his anger and had paid compensation.

An original charge of trying to procure murder was dropped for lack of evidence. The charges arose from Rudd's anger about the launch of his solo album, which had not gone well.

Rudd has lived in the seaside city of Tauranga, about 200 km (125 miles) southeast of Auckland, since he was sacked from the heavy metal band in 1983. He rejoined AC/DC in 1994 but has remained in New Zealand, where he owns a restaurant.

The band starts a world tour next month, including two concerts in New Zealand, but has replaced Rudd.

(Reporting by Gyles Beckford; Editing by Paul Tait)