Phil Rudd, the drummer for iconic 70s band AC/DC has been arrested in New Zealand. He has been accused of attempting to procure the murder of two men, but has been released on bail. One of the conditions of his bail is that he does not attempt to contact the hitman he hired.
The drummer was arrested at 7am on Thursday, and he appeared in court the same day. The intended victims’ names have not yet been released, nor has the name of the hitman Rudd attempted to hire. The AC/DC drummer is yet to enter a plea for the charges.
Rudd was part of the band during its most influential time period during the late 1970s and the first four years of the 1980s. He was there when album Back in Black was released, which included hits songs like Shoot to Thrill and Hells Bells. He was also the drummer for the top tracks on other albums, including Dirty Deeds Done Dirt Cheap and Highway to Hell.
He joined back with the band in 1994 and has remained part of it until now. While he originally lived in Australia, in 1983 he chose to move to New Zealand, which led to his decision to leave the band. Just recently, AC/DC co-founder Malcolm Young announced that his battle with his own dementia would mean that he was retiring from the music scene.
Rudd’s Tauranga home was raided on Thursday, leading to the AC/DC drummer’s arrest at around 7am New Zealand time. While the raid found some evidence over the alleged hiring of the hitman, cannabis and methamphetamine were also found. The ability to search the home came after “information received” by the police.
According to a jogger who was running past at the time, Rudd was on his balcony being questioned at the time. There was also a woman barely dressed being spoken to by police. The front gate had a police officer and security guard, and residents claim that security guards have been at the home a number of times over the last few weeks.
This is not the first time the drummer for AC/DC has had a run in with the law. In March he was in court due to not disclosing his drug use. It was an attempt to get a pilot’s licence. In the end he was acquitted, but the judge was suspicious of Rudd. The Civil Aviation Authority claimed that Rudd did not declare his past cannabis use, which has had confessed previously, during the renewal of his private pilot licence. The judge made it clear that being suspicious was not enough to find him guilty.
There is no news currently over whether this will hinder the band’s upcoming album release. They are set to release their latest album Rock or Bust at the end of this year. However, with this bad publicity, the remaining band members may decide to hold it off. It may also depend on the upcoming court dates and Rudd’s plea after the AC/DC drummer was arrested for attempting to hire a hitman for the murder of two people in New Zealand.
By Alexandria Ingham
Photo credit: CC-3.0