[an error occurred while processing this directive]
BBC News
watch One-Minute World News
Last Updated: Thursday, 20 July 2006, 07:23 GMT 08:23 UK
Rocker Richards pardoned at last
Keith Richards
Richards was stopped while travelling from Memphis to Dallas
Rolling Stone member Keith Richards is set to be pardoned - for a 31-year-old driving offence in US state Arkansas.

The veteran guitarist was arrested in the town of Fordyce in July 1975 for reckless driving and fined $162.20.

After Richards referred to the incident during a March concert in state capital Little Rock, Arkansas governor Mike Huckabee offered to clear his record.

"I realised his impression of our state was marred by a misdemeanour traffic stop," he told news agency Reuters.

"I wanted to clear his record in Arkansas as a goodwill gesture."

At the time of the incident, Richards was travelling from Memphis to Dallas with bandmate Ron Wood, a security guard and a fan.

Knife charge

After stopping in Fordyce for lunch, the musician was pulled over by police for swerving - caused, Richards said later, when he tried to adjust the radio.

Police claimed they smelled marijuana and took the four to jail. Richards was charged with reckless driving and possession of a concealed knife.

The knife charge was later dropped and the four were freed when a lawyer for the Stones posted bail. The fine was paid by mail.

Richards' record will be cleared once Governor Huckabee receives his pardon from the State Parole Board and signs it.

A Rolling Stones publicist told Reuters she knew nothing about the application for clemency made on Richards' behalf.

The Stones are currently performing in Europe as part of their A Bigger Bang world tour.

The band was forced to postpone 15 concerts following Richards' fall from a tree in Fiji and subsequent head surgery in New Zealand.

Rocker Richards returns to stage
12 Jul 06 |  Entertainment
Stones star plays down tree fall
11 Jul 06 |  Entertainment
Ron Wood in rehab 'but will tour'
17 Jun 06 |  Entertainment
Stones star given tour all-clear
02 Jun 06 |  Entertainment

The BBC is not responsible for the content of external internet sites

Has China's housing bubble burst?
How the world's oldest clove tree defied an empire
Why Royal Ballet principal Sergei Polunin quit


Americas Africa Europe Middle East South Asia Asia Pacific