Winehouse arrested in link to husband's court case

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The Independent Online

The troubled life of award-winning singer Amy Winehouse was plunged deeper into chaos last night when she was arrested on suspicion of perverting the course of justice. The 24-year-old was released on bail after being questioned at Shoreditch police station in east London in connection with charges against her husband, Blake Fielder-Civil.

Mr Fielder-Civil is currently remanded in custody. He and an associate, Michael Brown, are accused of assaulting James King, the landlord of the Macbeth public house in Hoxton, east London, on 20 June last year. It is alleged they later offered Mr King a significant amount of money to withdraw his allegation and leave the country. Several other men are facing the same charge. The men have been remanded in custody until 18 January, with a trial date pencilled in for June.

Police reportedly suspect 24-year-old Ms Winehouse's involvement because of her relative wealth compared to that of her husband.

Last night a representative for Ms Winehouse emphasised that the singer attended the police station "voluntarily", and at a pre-arranged time. The representative added that it was "common practice" for police to arrest those they want to interview in such cases, and that no charges had been brought. A Scotland Yard spokeswoman would only say: "A 24-year-old woman has been arrested by appointment at an east London police station. The arrest is in connection with an investigation into perverting the course of justice."

Last night's arrest came soon after reports that Ms Winehouse who was recently nominated for six Grammy awards has taken to spending time with the singer Pete Doherty, the lead singer of the band Babyshambles who has been arrested on numerous drugs charges and is described as a "scumbag" by Ms Winehouse's father.

Prior to the arrest yesterday, police sources had reportedly stated that Ms Winehouse would be questioned as a potential witness in the case and not as a suspect. "We have no evidence... [of] Amy being involved in any crime. If we had she would have been arrested straight away. But we do want to talk to her about matters, particularly financial ones, which may be important in this case. It seems that in her marriage she has been the breadwinner and has kept her husband in pocket money. We've looked at their financial affairs and there are questions we'd like to ask her."

Last month, Ms Winehouse, whose struggle with drug addiction has been well-documented, cited health reasons for the cancellation of a UK tour. She has blamed a string of badly received performances on missing Mr Fielder-Civil, 25, as he awaits trial. "My husband is everything to me and without him it's just not the same," she said.

The singer's parents are outspoken about her predicament. Her mother, Janis, recently wrote an open letter calling on her daughter to "take stock" of her life. "Early fame has overwhelmed you, it's dizzied you and muddled your mind," she wrote. "Forget you're a superstar. You're young and vulnerable, no stronger than any of the rest of us."

But the parents have dismissed reports that Miss Winehouse has entered a suicide pact with her husband should they receive long sentences over the impending court case.