Police rearrest Doherty outside court

Police rearrest Doherty outside court

Rock singer Pete Doherty was rearrested at court today moments after he was spared jail with a fine for driving offences.

The 30-year-old Babyshambles singer escaped a prison sentence at Gloucester Crown Court after admitting careless and drink driving after a gig in the city.

But after he was told to pay £2,050 in fines and banned from driving for 18 months, police officers escorted him from the court to the police station across the road.

The county force later confirmed he had been arrested on suspicion of possessing a controlled drug, but would not say what type.

In addition to the £2,050 in fines, Doherty was told to pay £145 costs and a £15 victim surcharge.

At an earlier hearing Doherty’s manager, Andrew Boyd, put up bail worth £50,000, accompanied by a curfew which was relaxed when Doherty was playing gigs.

He was also using a medical implant which prevents drug abuse, magistrates heard.

This summer he played a full set at Glastonbury Festival, which was praised by revellers.

His most recent album, 'Grace/Wastelands', was credited to “Peter Doherty”, rather than Pete, which critics saw as a sign of maturity.

The same name appeared on today’s court list.

Officers told Doherty of his arrest in the corridors of the Victorian court, and he was escorted down the steps where photographers were waiting.

Minutes before the dramatic scene the court heard Kate Moss’s former lover admit to careless driving on June 11 this year after playing a well-received gig to 300 fans at Guildhall.

He also admitted to drink driving that night, having given a reading of 50mg of alcohol per 100ml of breath.

Prosecutor Sarah Regan said the careless driving charge related to an “erratic, sharp turn” into Derby Road.

After the 12.30am pursuit, Doherty stopped the Mercedes and swapped seats with passenger Daisy Whitbread in an apparent attempt to avoid punishment.

The songwriter had already been disqualified from driving in 2007 and had not renewed his licence, the court heard.

Officers found one wrap of heroin in the car, worth up to £35, and what was described as “home-made crack pipe” on the driver’s seat.

A search of Doherty’s country home in Durley, near Marlborough, Wiltshire, uncovered a further 15 wraps worth around £350.

Ms Regan said Doherty claimed to have offered to drive instead of his female companion who felt she was not fit to take the wheel.

She added: “Mr Doherty was pulled from the door and arrested. It was noted that he was extremely unsteady on his feet, his eyes were glazed and he smelt very strongly of alcohol, causing the officer to form the view he was drunk.”

Ms Regan said Doherty had been driven to the gig by his manager but “as he came out of the back of Guildhall where the car was waiting, there were lots of people waiting – including a number of photographers”.

“Not wanting to be photographed with Ms Whitbread, Mr Doherty said that he just drove off as fast as he could. He saw the flashing lights of the police car behind him but didn’t think that they were for him.

“During the gig he said that he had been provided with half a bottle of rum when he went on stage and that it was probably empty when the gig finished. However, although he admitted that he had probably had enough to drink to make him over the limit, he didn’t think it would impair him in any way.”

Doherty had earlier admitted to two counts of drugs possession, driving without a licence and without insurance, as part of the same episode. The judge was waiting until today’s pleas were entered before dealing with all the offences together.

The court heard Doherty had 21 previous drug offences and six previous motoring offences. He had no convictions for driving.

Doherty’s defence barrister Peter Ratliff asked for a financial penalty, which Judge Martin Picton said was “proportionate to the offence”.

It is understood that Doherty had drugs on his person when arrested.

A Gloucestershire Constabulary spokeswoman said: “A 30-year-old Wiltshire man has been arrested on suspicion of being in possession of a controlled substance. He is currently assisting police with their inquiries.”

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