[an error occurred while processing this directive]
BBC News
watch One-Minute World News
Last Updated: Sunday, 30 July 2006, 11:57 GMT 12:57 UK
Drink-driving Gibson says sorry
Mel Gibson
Mel Gibson is one of Hollywood's biggest stars
Hollywood actor and director Mel Gibson has said he is "ashamed" of the actions that led to his arrest for drink-driving early on Friday morning.

The Oscar-winner, 50, was stopped after driving at 87mph in a 45mph zone in Malibu, California.

He failed a breath test, was charged with drink-driving and freed on bail.

Gibson also said sorry for "despicable" statements he made during the arrest and for his "horrific relapse", after battling alcoholism all his adult life.

"The arresting officer was just doing his job and I feel fortunate that I was apprehended before I caused injury to any other person," he said.

Gibson said he "acted like a person completely out of control" when he was arrested and said things "that I do not believe to be true and which are despicable".

"I take this opportunity to apologise to the deputies involved for my belligerent behaviour," he said.

"They have always been there for me in my community and indeed probably saved me from myself."

'Cover-up'

Gibson did not explain the offensive comments and a detective from the Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department also declined to comment on the actor's behaviour.

However Sergeant John Hocking told the AP news agency detectives would begin investigating the incident on Monday.

Sheriff Lee Baca denied that his department were trying to cover up Gibson's alleged behaviour.

"There is no cover-up. Our job is not to (focus) on what he said. It's to establish his blood-alcohol level when he was driving and proceed with the case," Sheriff Baca told the Los Angeles Times.

Steve Whitmore, a spokesman for the department, also would not comment on what Gibson said but he added that the department would eventually release details of the arrest, the New York Times reported.

"Nothing will be sanitised," Mr Whitmore said in a statement.

Gibson's bail has been set at $5,000 (2,680).

Devout Catholic

Gibson won a best director Oscar for his 1995 film Braveheart, in which he also starred.

His 2004 biblical epic, The Passion of the Christ, was recently named the most controversial movie to date by US magazine Entertainment Weekly.

A devout Catholic, Gibson shot the film depicting the last 12 hours in the life of Jesus Christ in Aramaic and Latin. It took more than $600m (337.5m) worldwide

His new film Apocalypto is set 3,000 years ago in central America and features dialogue spoken in an obscure Mayan dialect.

Gibson is also known for several other works, including the Lethal Weapon and Mad Max series of films in which he starred.




SEE ALSO
Gibson charged with drink-driving
28 Jul 06 |  Entertainment
Passion 'most controversial film'
10 Jun 06 |  Entertainment
Gibson gives hints on next film
31 Oct 05 |  Entertainment
Mel Gibson: Action hero gets serious
25 Feb 04 |  Entertainment

RELATED BBC LINKS

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



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

PRODUCTS & SERVICES

Americas Africa Europe Middle East South Asia Asia Pacific