AC/DC drummer in court

AC/DC drummer Phil Rudd showed up late for a New Zealand court appearance and clowned around by jumping on the back of one of his security guards outside the courthouse.

Rudd did not enter a plea during his brief appearance.

The 60-year-old is charged with threatening to kill, which comes with a maximum prison sentence of seven years, as well as possessing methamphetamine and marijuana.

Citing a lack of evidence, prosecutors earlier dropped a more serious charge that alleged Rudd tried to hire a hitman to kill two people.

The New Zealand Herald newspaper reported that during his appearance, Rudd winked at reporters, drummed a rhythm on the dock and afterwards sped away from the courthouse in a black sports car.

Rudd’s future with the popular Australian band remains uncertain.

He remains free on bail with his next court appearance scheduled for December 2.

That is coincidentally the same day that the band’s new album is due to be released.

Rudd’s lawyer could not be immediately contacted for comment.

He previously said that the case had attracted sensational worldwide publicity and Rudd had suffered“incalculable damage” and would consider “any possible remedies he may have”.

The Australian-born Rudd has lived in Tauranga for several years since first moving to New Zealand in 1983.

Under New Zealand law, threatening to kill can attract a seven-year sentence.

AC/DC, which was founded by Malcolm and Angus Young in Australia in 1973, is one of the biggest-selling bands in history.

The group has just released a new album Rock or Bust and plans to back its launch with a global tour in 2015.


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