The singer and DJ Boy George has been charged with false imprisonment after allegedly chaining a male escort to a wall in his flat as a sex slave.
The 47-year-old former Culture Club frontman, real name George O'Dowd, was released on bail yesterday and ordered to attend Thames magistrates' court on Thursday of next week.
Auden Carlsen, a 28-year-old Norwegian escort, claims he was grabbed and chained up by George and another man after the singer invited him back to his home in Shoreditch, east London, to pose for photographs in April.
According to newspaper reports following George's arrest at the time, the Eighties pop icon allegedly produced whips and sex toys and told Mr Karlsen: "Now you'll get what you deserve." The escort claimed he escaped after wrenching a hook out of the wall.
In a statement yesterday, Scotland Yard said: "George O'Dowd, 47, a musician of Ravey Street, EC2, is charged with the false imprisonment of a 28-year-old in Ravey Street on 28 April. He has been bailed to return before Thames Magistrates Court on 22 November."
George, who became a global star with Culture Club thanks to a series of hit singles including Do You Really Want To Hurt Me?, has had brushes with the law in the past. Last month, he was sued for loss of earnings by a nightclub owner after failing to show up for a performance in Warrington, Cheshire. George was told by a court to pay £31,000 compensation.
Last year, the singer was sentenced to community service and ordered to sweep the streets of New York City after he admitted wasting police time by falsely reporting a burglary at his Manhattan apartment. Officers who responded to the call found cocaine there.
The singer's well documented drug use had begun to spiral out of control at the height of his fame.
In 1986, he and his bandmates were arrested for possessing heroin following a police raid called "Operation Culture".
George had less chart success after Culture Club split up in 1986, but did score a No 1 solo hit with a cover version of Ken Boothe's reggae song, Everything I Own.
In recent years, he has reinvented himself as a club DJ and fashion designer. His clothing label, B-Rude, has featured in several international shows but has largely met with scepticism from critics. The singer also wrote an autobiographical musical called Taboo.