The singer Amy Winehouse has checked into a rehab clinic days after the release of a video apparently showing her smoking crack cocaine, her record company announced last night.
The 24-year-old, who has been the subject of near-constant media speculation about drug-taking in recent months, made the decision after holding meetings with her producers at Universal. The label, which expressed its desire to do "anything" it could to help her, said in a statement yesterday: "After talks... she has decided to go into rehab."
The development came after Winehouse's father, Mitch, revealed that he had attempted to get his daughter sectioned under the Mental Health Act. The request was turned down because it could not be proved that she would harm herself.
In a statement, Universal said: "She has come to understand that she requires specialist treatment to continue her ongoing recovery from drug addiction and prepare for her planned appearance at the Grammy Awards [next month]. Amy entered the facility by mutual agreement and continues to receive the full support of all concerned."
The controversial singer has cancelled a scheduled appearance at the NRJ awards ceremony in Paris tomorrow.
Asked yesterday about the question of his daughter being sectioned, Mr Winehouse told Vanessa Feltz's BBC Radio programme: "Obviously this is something that we have looked at. What you have got to understand is that Amy is nowhere near being in a position to be sectioned. She really has to be a danger to herself. You might consider taking drugs is a danger to herself, but unfortunately the authorities don't."
He added: "Part of the problem is she doesn't think she's got a problem. She thinks she can do what she does recreationally and get on with the rest of her life."
Mr Winehouse described the most recent drugs revelations about the singer as "horrible". The Back To Black star – who released the song "Rehab" in 2006 – was shown on Tuesday in a 13-minute video released by The Sun apparently smoking the class-A drug before a night out.
The singer, who is loved for her undoubted talent but is often booed for her antics, was given a confidence boost last month when she was nominated for six prestigious Grammy Awards in the US. It was reported last night that she is still planning to attend the awards – in Los Angeles on 10 February – though she must first obtain a visa. Her chances of doing so have been thrown into doubt by the video and her arrest in Norway last October for possessing cannabis.