In the Media

Michael Barrymore fined ?780 after admitting possession of cocaine

PUBLISHED December 7, 2011

Court told how entertainer swore at police after early morning car accident

Michael Barrymore was fined ?780 on Wedenesday after he admitted possessing cocaine found by police after an early morning car accident. The 59-year-old entertainer was arrested at 4.30am on November 22 after a Citroen DS3 hit a kerb in Acton, west London.

The TV personality, born Michael Parker, admitted the charge at Ealing magistrates court, west London. A second charge, of being drunk and disorderly, was withdrawn.

Sally Peters, prosecuting, said police officers had noticed a vehicle with accident damage by the side of the road.

They approached the car but when they asked Barrymore who had been driving, he replied: "I am not answering you", the court heard. He went on: "Don't you think I've had enough fucking shit from you lot over the years? I know the law."

He was taken to a police custody suite and tried to conceal what looked like a white substance in his mouth, Peters said. "He refused to spit it out, was strip-searched and a rock of cocaine was found in his pocket," she told the court. A test showed he had taken the class A drug.

Barrymore's lawyer, Richard Gowthorpe, said the quantity of the drug involved had been described as "a very small amount" and that the entertainer had apologised to the police for his behaviour.

While he now had a criminal conviction, his client had entered the court a man of good character, he said. "In many ways it's a sad day for Mr Parker to be before the courts and he's pleaded guilty to this offence," he said. "Certainly he will be punished to a degree by the conviction itself."

Barrymore had urged his lawyer to point out that the evening in question had been "exceptional" and "there was an exceptional set of circumstances" at the time, Gowthorpe added.

"This behaviour is wholly out of character. This is not part of a general lifestyle that Mr Parker is living. He's addressing the problem, he's addressing the temptation and there's no present drug use," he said. © 2011 Guardian News and Media Limited or its affiliated companies. All rights reserved. | Use of this content is subject to our Terms & Conditions | More Feeds