It’s a long way to the dock

AC/DC drummer and Tauranga resident Phil Rudd may have difficulty continuing his globe trotting lifestyle after being convicted of cannabis possession on Wednesday morning.

When leaving the courthouse convicted of cannabis possession, Phil Rudd told SunLive, 'I'm not a bad person.”

Rudd, who was convicted under his legal name Phillip Witschke, appeared before community magistrate Robyn Paterson in the Tauranga District Court.

This is the first time he has been convicted of a drug offence.

His lawyer, Craig Tuck, asked the magistrate to discharge him without conviction because the 'low level” offence could hinder his chances of travelling internationally as AC/DC's drummer.

The offence was discovered by police when they executed a search warrant on Rudd's launch, called Barchetta, at the Tauranga Bridge Marina on October 7.

Inside they found 25 grams of cannabis and a further two grams of cannabis at another location on the boat.

Phil's 2010 Bentley Continental.

Craig told the court that Rudd spent nine months travelling the globe with AC/DC in 2009, earning his share of $400 million from concerts.

'Over the last nine months, at least 20 countries have been entered,” says Craig.

'He travels extensively around the globe, across the planet, and on the basis of such criminality, which is low level offending, he is being targeted.”

Craig told the magistrate that Rudd was remorseful and has taken full responsibility for his actions.

He says Rudd has contributed millions of dollars to the local community since moving to Tauranga.

Phil Rudd outside the Tauranga District Court on Wednesday morning.

Police opposed Tuck's request to have his client discharged without conviction.

They say that if Rudd wanted to enter a country like the United States, he would still have to declare that he has been arrested on drugs charges and appeared in court.

Community magistrate Robyn Paterson refused the request for him to be discharged without conviction saying Rudd was playing 'Russian roulette” by being in possession of cannabis.

She says given his age, responsibilities and the fact that he earns multi-millions travelling the world, he should have known how serious a drug conviction could be.

'It was not just an accident. You were blindly ignoring the law. You have been playing Russian roulette.”

Rudd was convicted and given a fine of $250 and ordered to pay court fees.

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What a waste of time

Posted on 01-12-2010 15:06 | By jhwt72

What did it cost me as a tax payer to search his place. Hes a rock star for gods sake, I' surprised at how little they found. I've seen school kids with more weed than that. Talk about targeting an easy mark. Mr Asia aye

what a waste of time

Posted on 01-12-2010 15:34 | By The author of this comment has been removed.

obviously mr rudd wasnt dealing weed or hurting anyone /damagaging property / drinking n driving surely we have more of a problem with drunks on the strand,drunkin domestics,drunkin teenagers all over our streets yet we continue to allow alchohol to be supplied in so many locations has mr rudd been causing any other problems?? most smokers stay put and dont seem to cause a fraction of the crap that our lovely drunks do maybee they eat a bit more or watch a few more dvds than the average joe blo, i dont think his age or responsibilities has anything to do with it. ok so we dont really want a stoned workforce but we do allow a hungover one. phil...maybe its time to move to amsterdam

What The............

Posted on 01-12-2010 15:37 | By redcoupenz

The cops could search hundreds of properties and come up with as much if not more cannabis. It would have been some high ranking cops idea that they should search Rudd's property and would most like find something and because of his profile it would get plenty of media attention and send a message to other users. Sure he broke the law but so does everyone who exceeds 50kph on Cameron Rd, and nearly everyone does.

Acting on nosy informant tips?

Posted on 01-12-2010 15:46 | By The author of this comment has been removed.

To echo earlier comments, what a waste of resources. It seems to me some nosy boat owner nearby has told tall tales of the extravagant parties and drugs consumed on his boat etc etc. Frankly I'm impressed he had so little weed knowing his publicised background. I dont believe the conviction will significantly hinder his travel plans.

Absolutely Agree!

Posted on 01-12-2010 16:01 | By bryceh

What a complete waste of bloody time! A person of this caliber who has done so much for the communities here in New Zealand, has been nailed for less than an ounce of grass!! What a bloody joke this justice system is. You know, what is damned infuriating is that the cost of the process and the total disregard by the law to the valuable resources at their disposal, and the guy is ordered to pay $250! Well all I can sy is that to you stupid law enforcement officers ***line removed*** I hope anyone in your own network of friends and family, suffers an equal punishment when they are caught with the same "soft" drug! You know what I would do to spite your stupid decision if I was in his (Phil's) position.... I would pack up my wealth and my influence and I would move to another country. I would tell the lot of you to get stuffed!

police balls up!

Posted on 01-12-2010 16:12 | By Lisa

Just another balls up by the NZ police. I doubt that the $250 dollar fine covers the costs of wages for one officer involved in the raid. I guess the NZ police will make up for it by handing out traffic offenses to people for doing 55km/h in a 50km/h area.

Totally agree with all the above, but...

Posted on 01-12-2010 17:13 | By loudandproud

What's the relevance of a picture of Phil's car? I'm sure he'll love having his privacy breached by showing the whole world his number plate. Better watch out he doesnt sue your arses!

Against the grain here ..

Posted on 01-12-2010 17:46 | By Matt

He's a drug head. Now he's a convicted drug head. Where have his "millions" been spent in Tauranga. Massage parlours? Reap what you sow.


Posted on 01-12-2010 18:09 | By bridp

The Black Force Totally agreed. Be afraid. Proves that the police have the power to invade anyone's privacy "if they suspect that a crime is or is about to be committed". A blatant misuse of powers. They had to find something in order to justify their heavy handed approach. Stalinist?

NZ 'justice' is a donkey.

Posted on 01-12-2010 19:38 | By SpeakUp

I totally agree with above statements, especially with 'bryceh'. I am disgusted with our ‘justice' system on a day when a child basher causing brain injury receives 3 months home detention from a Hamilton judge. Let's just look at what a musician like Rudd did for New Zealand and what useless busybodies contribute. This pathetic narrow-minded mean-spirited folly of rectitude will no doubt make NZ the laughingstock of communities worldwide. Don't police have something better to do with our tax money? Instead of playing a purveyor of virtue community magistrate Robyn Paterson (wife of WBoP mayor Paterson) should have admonished this frivolous waste of public resources. Ah, the law, she might say. The law is as far removed from justice as that community magistrate is from our community. I hope Mr Rudd writes a new song. Title could be: 'Dogsbodies of righteousness”.

Dont knock the fuzz

Posted on 02-12-2010 10:08 | By The author of this comment has been removed.

They were just doing their jobs, man BryceH you've got a lot of hatred built up. By no means do I think this was a worthwhile use of resources, but the individual cops and justice system are not to blame. He must've appeared on similar charges at least once to get a conviction in this case. Don't worry Phil I'm on your side. I'm more interested in the likely do-gooders that saw fit to tell the cops 'Yep hes on his boat now, come get him...that criminal has 25grams of weed on him!"

Cops do worse

Posted on 02-12-2010 12:50 | By The Godfather

There's probably crooked cops out there who commit worse offences than being in possession of a paltry 27 grams of dope. NZ gets closer to a police state everyday.

Don't Misunderstand Me!

Posted on 02-12-2010 13:06 | By bryceh

Teeto, this is obviously in response to your comment about "Hatred" - Dude I have no hatred, other than towards a misused, waste of resources that I as a tax payer fund, along with all others of course. Open your eyes and look around you! There are people bashing elderly people and getting a slap across the wrist, there are kids bashing other kids who get a warning, there are corporates committing massive frauds every day, and THESE are the things that should be dealt with severely. The time, resources, and money that it has cost to bring Phil (or anybody else for that matter) before the courts on a charge like this, is ridiculous. My hatred Teeto is towards injustice, nothing else. My passion however is strong, and I believe if 3 million others in this country felt as strongly as I do about these and other things, the system would change and we would all be safer and happier. The cops and judges have a job to do and they are allowed a certain amount of discretion. It is about time they used it, and used it wisely. In a nutshell... The potential consequences of this conviction FAR OUTWEIGH the damage or trouble that the act caused.

Vindictive nastiness

Posted on 02-12-2010 13:31 | By nightbeat

It's a vile and despicable thing for a court to try to destroy the career of a talented musician over such a trivial crime. The worst thing about marijuana is that it can lead to tobacco addiction: why don't the legislators decriminalise pot so that the police can focus on the real problems, such as methamphetamine? Pot smokers make soft targets, I guess.

I'm not misunderstanding you Bryce, I'm quoting you

Posted on 02-12-2010 15:34 | By The author of this comment has been removed.

"Well all I can sy (sic) is that to you stupid law enforcement officers ***line removed*** I hope anyone in your own network of friends and family, suffers an equal punishment when they are caught with the same "soft" drug!"
Not angry at anyone in particular? yeah right...

I agree in general that there are greater travesties, sicker crims and bigger problems to worry about, but laws are there...not to subjugate, but to incriminate serious offenders. Remember when weed was a mainstay of gang profiteering? You cant convict those baddies without laws aye. Reform is however overdue, the real crims have moved onto peddling much nastier junk.

In all seriousness though, hows your name and shame website coming along? Don't forget to let us know where to find it.

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