Boy George told: make-up classes are no punishment

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A frustrated Manhattan judge has issued an arrest warrant for Boy George, noting that the former Culture Club frontman had failed to pay a $1,000 fine. The fine was part of a sentence imposed in March after he pleaded guilty to falsely reporting a burglary to police.

"I put people in jail who don't pay fines," Judge Anthony Ferrara told Louis Freeman, a lawyer representing Boy George, real name George O'Dowd. "Why shouldn't I do that?" The judge, however, agreed to wait until a 26 June hearing before enforcing the arrest warrant.

The singer's troubles in Manhattan began in October 2005 when he reported the burglary. After police officers arrived in his Little Italy apartment they found 13 bags of cocaine. The singer agreed to plead guilty earlier this year to avoid far more serious charges.

The court also frowned on the singer's suggestions for how he might fulfil another part of his sentence, five days of community service. They included helping teenagers make public service announcements, holding make-up workshops and DJing at an HIV-Aids benefit. Judge Ferrara agreed that street sweeping might not be appropriate, but his sympathies stopped there.