Tuesday, June 3, 2014

Scorpions drummer treated for alcoholism following Dubai arrest and jail sentence

Scorpions drummer James Kottak has released a statement updating his status following his arrest, detention and release from a Dubai jail last month.

Here is Kottack’s statement in full:

“After years of drinking alcohol, on April 3rd, 2014 my addiction finally caught up with me during a 5-hour flight from Ekaterinburg, Russia to Bahrain via Dubai, during which I consumed 5 or 6 glasses of wine. While at the airport in Dubai I approached an airline representative to check on status of my flight. The representative informed me that I was in the wrong place and I replied “WTF?!.” The representative then called the police and reported that I was intoxicated (which I was) and that I made a lewd jester.

One of the police officers recognised me as drummer of “The Scorpions”. When the police asked me to show my ID., I showed them the “Rock & ROLL FOREVER” tattoo on my back, instead of my actual ID. which was in my back pack my friend was carrying for me. Apparently, the police did not find this funny and I was charged with “Drinking Without a License”, for which I pleaded guilty and received a one-month sentence and a 2,000 Dirham (300 USD) fine. I was also charged with insulting Islam/Muslims by making a lewd jester for which I pleaded not guilty and did not actually do.

Upon returning to the United States on May 6th, I immediately reached out to Bob Forrest, an addiction specialist known for his work with musicians and “Celebrity Rehab”. I have been meeting with Bob on a regular basis. He has guided me to the MusiCares Organization, which provides musicians with help for mental health and addiction issues.

I am determined to come to grips with my alcoholism and am doing everything on a daily basis to beat this relentless disease. This entire incident caused me to realize that it is time to stop drinking once and for all so that I can become the father, musician, and friend that I know I can be.

I am glad to put this unfortunate incident behind me and move onward and upward with my life. I would like to send out a HUGE thank-you to my family, friends and fans around the world for their incredible loving support…you kick ass! I would also like to send a sincere apology from the bottom of my heart to everyone I have affected and look forward to seeing you all!!

with love, James Kottak – Tomorrow is a brand new day!”

On April 29th, the drummer was sentenced to one month in jail and was fined 2,000 dirhams (approximately US $545) for drinking alcohol without a license. In police custody since the April 3rd incident, Kottack was released in early May.

As a result of his detainment, Kottak missed The Scorpions’ April 5th performance at the 2014 Formula One Gulf Air Bahrain Grand Prix; the group brought in drummer Mark Cross (Tainted Nation, Firewind, Outloud, Helloween, Metallium) to fill in for the show.

Earlier this year, the band released “MTV Unplugged - Scorpions Live In Athens”, a package compiled from three concerts in Athens, Greece at the city’s Lycabettus Theatre last fall.

See also:

Scorpions drummer released from Dubai jail
Scorpions release statement regarding jailed drummer
Scorpions drummer jailed for alleged misconduct at Dubai airport
Scorpions to perform at Formula One Gulf Air Bahrain Grand Prix
Search The Scorpions at hennemusic