LONDON (Reuters) - Babyshambles frontman Pete Doherty was fined Wednesday for walking into a court last month with heroin in his pocket.
The British singer, who has a history of drug arrests and once dated supermodel Kate Moss, was at Gloucester Magistrates’ Court in western England to learn his punishment for the December 21 incident, the Press Association reported.
Doherty, 30, appeared in court before Christmas to be fined for careless driving, but as he was being escorted from the premises security guards saw heroin fall from his pocket.
He was immediately arrested and later charged with possession of the illegal drug.
“Either this was sheer stupidity or a ploy to get more publicity,” judge Joti Boparai said Wednesday.
Doherty was fined 750 pounds ($1,200) and 85 pounds in costs. Boparai ruled that, because Doherty was paying for drug treatment privately, it would not be worth taking money from the “public purse” to put him on a rehabilitation order.
Doherty’s lawyer Bruce Clark said the singer felt “very stupid” after being caught with heroin worth nearly 200 pounds in his pocket, but that he had not known it was there.
“He has a great many items of clothing — suits and clothes going into the hundreds,” Clark told the court. “There were residual drugs which he had left in one coat pocket. He didn’t necessarily choose the coat for himself.
“He is a recovering heroin addict and has received some very sophisticated medical treatment. He had been an addict for some years and is a very well known, famous musician with a huge international reputation.”
Clark played down the example set by Doherty to his fans.
“I have never got drunk because I was under the influence of Ernest Hemingway. It doesn’t work that way.”
The lawyer added that Doherty was using medical implants which cancel out the effect of heroin.
“It’s working for him,” he added.
Reporting by Mike Collett-White, Editing by Paul Casciato