Former AC/DC drummer Phil Rudd has lost the appeal against his home arrest sentence for making death threats and drugs possession.
And the ruling judge has decided that there’s no evidence the confinement order has affected his carer – because it’s not certain the Aussie giants wanted him to remain a part of the band when he committed his crimes.
Rudd, 61, was ordered to serve eight months of home detention in July, following his arrest last year. He was also told to pay $120,000 in reparation to his victims and he’s continuing a rehab programme for addiction to methamphetamine.
Lawyer Craig Tuck argued in New Zealand’s Tauranga District Court that the sentence was “manifestly excessive” and that his client should have been dismissed without conviction.
But Justice Raynor Asher disagreed. And he countered the suggestion that conviction affected his job by saying: “Mr Rudd may practice as a musician in session work, and in concerts in New Zealand and other countries.”
Dealing with the suggestion that the sentence forced him to lose income from AC/DC, Justice Asher said: “First, the band would have to want him to play with them. Second, the convictions would have to operate as a barrier to him travelling with them. Neither are certain.
“It is far from clear that, when the offending took place, there was any place in the band available to Mr Rudd, given his drug addiction and state of mind.
“It is only in certain countries that there is a problem arising from the convictions. There is nothing to indicate that if Mr Rudd was a greatly wanted band member, that his inability to travel to those countries would mean that he could not be employed in other countries.”
The sticksman will return to court next month to answer a charge of breaking the terms of his home arrest by having alcohol on his property. AC/DC complete their Rock Or Bust world tour in Australia and New Zealand during November and December – but they’ve already ruled out a guest appearance from Rudd during their visit.