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Last Updated: Tuesday, 28 March 2006, 09:30 GMT 10:30 UK
Village People 'cop' in custody
Victor Willis
Victor Willis co-wrote YMCA
A former member of the Village People has been arrested in California on drug and gun charges, having missed court when he was due to be jailed.

Victor Willis, who dressed as the policeman in the 1970s group, had agreed a plea deal with prosecutors.

He was to serve 16 months for gun and cocaine possession when he skipped bail but now faces up to five years.

Mr Willis, 54, co-wrote Village People hits In the Navy and YMCA but left the band in 1980.

'Spiralling out'

A drug problem was blamed on his leaving the flamboyant group to be replaced by Ray Simpson. The Village People continue to tour with three of the original members.

Mr Willis had been free on $100,000 (56,000) bail when he broke his bail conditions.

"It's just sad that his life has spiralled down to the point where in all likelihood he's going to go to prison," said assistant district attorney Morley Pitt.

Mr Pitt said because he had missed court hearings Mr Willis of San Francisco now can expect four years jail on the charges he previously faced and another eight months for additional drugs charges.

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