Drunk in Dubai: Scorpions drummer admits addiction after spending jail time in the UAE
American musician James Kottak has admitted his alcohol addiction "finally caught up" with him during a five-hour flight to Bahrain.
The drummer of German rock band Scorpions missed the group's performance at Bahrain Grand Prix on April 5 after being arrested for getting drunk, cursing Muslims, making an indecent gesture to a group of passengers and removing his pants at Dubai airport while in transit from Ekaterinburg, Russia.
"After years of drinking alcohol, on April 3, my addiction finally caught up with me during a five-hour flight from Ekaterinburg, Russia to Bahrain via Dubai, during which I consumed five or six glasses of wine," he said in a statement.
"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 gesture.
"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.
"Apparently, the police did not find this funny and I was charged with 'drinking without a licence', for which I pleaded guilty and received a one-month sentence and a 2,000 dirhams fine.
"I was also charged with insulting Islam/Muslims by making a lewd gesture, for which I pleaded not guilty and did not actually do."
He said he reached out to addiction specialist Bob Forrest as soon as he arrived in the US on May 6.
"I am determined to come to grips with my alcoholism and am doing everything on a daily basis to beat this relentless disease," he added.
"This entire incident caused me to realise 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."