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Mick Jagger and Keith Richards 1967 drug bust is planned for feature film

Keith Richards and Mick Jagger leave Chichester Magistrates Court in London, on May 10, 1967
Keith Richards and Mick Jagger leave Chichester Magistrates Court in London, on May 10, 1967
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The son of a former attorney of Rolling Stones members Mick Jagger and Keith Richards is hoping to make feature film about Jagger and Richards' 1967 drug bust. According to a Daily Mail report published on June 1, 2014, actor Nigel Havers (son of the late attorney Sir Michael Havers) will play his father in the movie, which has a script and is seeking financing. Michael Havers was Jagger and Richards' attorney at the time of the drug bust, which resulted in Jagger and Richards spending time in jail, being convicted of the crimes, but eventually avoiding more prison time when a judge threw out their prison sentences.

Nigel Havers told the Daily Mail: "When my father defended Mick and Keith, it was the first major celebrity drugs case. They came to our flat and I got to know them. But I was sworn to secrecy. I couldn’t tell my school friends because it would sound as if I was showing off."

When Jagger and Richards were busted for drugs on February 12, 1967, many people suspected it was a set-up by government officials who wanted to make an example out of the Stones. A 2010 report in the Daily Mail confirmed that theory.

The arrests happened during a drug-fueled party at Richards’ Redlands home in Sussex, England. What made the police raid suspicious was that a drug dealer named David Sniderman (nicknamed the Acid King, because he distributed large quantities of potent LSD) had been hanging out with the Stones and was at Redlands when the drug bust happened, but Sniderman was never arrested during the incident, even though he reportedly supplied many of the drugs at the party.

The Acid King quickly disappeared after the drug bust (he reportedly left England the next day), and the Stones never had contact with him again. (NOTE: Various reports have spelled the Acid King's last name as Sniderman, Schneiderman or Schneidermann. For the purposes of this article, it is spelled Sniderman because that is how it appears in the Daily Mail report.)

Richards and Marianne Faithfull (Jagger’s live-in girlfriend at the time, who was also present during the drug bust, but she wasn’t arrested) have gone on the record for years about how they felt about the drug bust, by saying that they believe that police would not have raided the home and made the arrests had it not been for Sniderman's carefully planned betrayal of the Stones.

In exclusive interviews with an ex-girlfriend and a former brother-in-law of Sniderman (who changed his name to David Jove after the drug bust), the Daily Mail reports that Sniderman/Jove admitted to these close confidants that he was an informant recruited by U.K. and U.S. federal government officials to help set up the drug bust, and that the purpose was to target the Rolling Stones and cause legal problems for the band.

Lead singer Jagger and guitarist Richards pleaded not guilty, but they were found guilty in a jury trial. Jagger was sentenced to three months in prison for possession of four amphetamine pills, and Richards was sentenced to 12 months in prison for allowing his home to be used for smoking cannabis. They would both spend less than two days in prison for those convictions before their prison sentences were quickly thrown out on appeal. However, the legal repercussions of being convicted of drug-related crimes would haunt the Stones for years, with Jagger and Richards having difficulties obtaining visas or entry in certain countries.

Robert Fraser, an art dealer who was also arrested at the Redlands bust, pleaded guilty to heroin possession, and he was sentenced to six months in prison. Unlike Jagger and Richards, Fraser was denied bail, and his guilty plea meant that he had to serve his prison sentence.

It has been reported in numerous articles and books about the Rolling Stones that the amphetamine pills found in Jagger's jacket during the raid actually belonged to Faithfull, who had placed the pills in the jacket and forgot about them. Jagger reportedly knew that the pills belonged to Faithfull, but Jagger took the blame, because he felt a drug-related arrest would hurt her career and reputation more than it would hurt his.

According to the Daily Mail, after the drug bust, Sniderman/Jove moved to Los Angeles, where he became a small-time producer and filmmaker. Sniderman/Jove, who died in 2004, was the father of rock violinist Lili Haydn.

Maggie Abbott, a former lover of Sniderman/Jove, whom she says she met in 1983, has come forward to reveal what she says Sniderman/Jove confessed to her about his role in getting members of the Rolling Stones arrested.

"David was a heavy drug user but had a quick wit," Abbott tells the Daily Mail in an article published on October 24, 2010. "He was the perfect choice to infiltrate the Stones. He never showed any remorse for what he did. It was all about how he had been ‘the victim.’ He was a totally selfish person. Mick had been my friend as well as a client and I thought about trying to persuade David to come clean publicly, but he was always armed with a handgun and I feared that if I gave him away, he’d shoot me."

Abbott, who was a talent agent in the 1960s, also said in the Daily Mail interview that in 1985, she and Faithfull went out to dinner, where Abbott introduced Sniderman/Jove to Faithfull under the name David Jove. Despite the name change, Abbott says that Faithfull immediately recognized the so-called Acid King, and told Abbott not to get involved with him because he was suspected of setting up the Redlands drug bust.

James Weinstock, whose sister Lotus married Sniderman/Jove in 1969, says in an interview with the Daily Mail that Sniderman/Jove told him that he was involved in the Rolling Stones arrest conspiracy so that Sniderman/Jove would avoid being sent to prison after he was caught trying sneak marijuana into the United Kingdom. (Lotus got divorced from Sniderman/Jove around 1987, and she is now deceased.)

"They gave him an ultimatum: he’d get out of prison time if he set up the Stones," says Weinstock, who revealed that Sniderman/Jove told Weinstock that he had committed murder multiple times. Weinstock also says in the interview that Sniderman/Jove claimed to be working with the MI5/MI6 and FBI to help get the Rolling Stones arrested.

George Harrison of the Beatles and his first wife, Pattie Boyd, were at the Redlands party that night, but narrowly escaped arrest because they happened to leave before the police arrived. It’s been suggested in most Rolling Stones books and in many articles about the drug bust that government officials were tipped off that Harrison and Boyd were at the Redlands party that evening, and the police waited for the couple to leave, because the cops did not want to arrest a Beatle.

It has been reported in numerous articles and books about the Rolling Stones that the amphetamine pills found in Jagger's jacket during the raid actually belonged to Faithfull, who had placed the pills in the jacket and forgot about them. Jagger reportedly knew that the pills belonged to Faithfull, but Jagger took the blame, because he felt a drug-related arrest would hurt her career and reputation more than it would hurt his.

Although Faithfull has confirmed that at the time of the drug bust, she was naked with a fur rug or bed cover wrapped around her, she has long been dogged by the story that police found her with a Mars candy bar inserted in her genital area. Faithfull and other eyewitnesses to the incident say that the Mars bar story is untrue.

In Richards’2010 memoir "Life," he gives his version of what happened at the Redlands bust. The Times had excerpts from "Life," in which Richards recalls that there were a couple of chocolate bars at the party, and one of them was on a table in front of a sofa were Faithfull was reclining.

Richards says that Faithfull was naked when the cops raided in the home, because she had just taken a bath, and "she was dressed in this fur bedspread that she’d been all day." But Richards insists that it is "a myth" that Faithfull or anyone else at the party was using any chocolate bars as a sex toy on her.

Richards says in the book that he was so high on LSD during the drug bust that he thought the police were identically dressed dwarfs: "very small people wearing dark blue with shiny bits and helmets."

After the arrest, Richards says that he thinks the judge in the case gave him a harsher-than-expected sentence because of an irreverent comment that Richards made during the trial.

When the prosecutor suggested that a young woman should be ashamed to be wearing nothing but a rug among a group of eight men, Richards said in court: "We are not old men. We are not worried about petty morals."

Richards says in his "Life" memoir: "There's two ways the authorities can deal with a perceived challenge. One is to absorb and the other is to nail. They had to leave the Beatles alone because they had already given them medals. We got the nail. It was more serious than I thought. I was in jail because I'd obviously pissed off the authorities. I'm a guitar player in a pop band and I'm being targeted by the British government and its vicious police force, all of which shows me how frightened they are."

Despite all the problems that the Redlands drug bust caused, Richards says that it fueled the outlaw image that made him even more of a hero to many people. "I’ve been playing up to it ever since."

In 2011, the Simons Wells book "Butterfly on the Wheel: The Great Rolling Stones Drugs Bust" was published. Omnibus Press (the book's publisher) had this description of the book: "Using previously unpublished police and court documents, best-selling author Simon Wells reveals what really happened on the night of the drugs raid as well as the extraordinary conspiracy mounted to end the careers of Jagger and Richards, and how the Establishment widened their net to drag in the Beatles and other rock stars. With fresh interviews with lawyers, police, eye witnesses and those present at the notorious party, Wells reveals the truth about the celebrity pushers, London gangsters, bent cops, corrupt newspapers and dodgy politicians."