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York DJ Andrew Bird, who is accused of drug dealing in Croatia, is freed on bail
A DJ from York who is accused of selling drugs during a music festival in Croatia last year has finally been freed from custody.
The family of Andrew Bird, 27, of Gale Lane, Acomb, who has been held in a Croatian prison since he was arrested last September, raised sufficient bail to secure his release until his trial is due to start.
His father, Kevin, of Pocklington, told The Press he had travelled with his son from Croatia to Italy, and planned to return from there to the UK.
“Andrew’s trial is due in May, which he intends to return to Croatia for,” he said.
Mr Bird previously said he needed to raise £11,000 for bail, and all he wanted was for Andrew to be able to come home and stay in the UK until the Croatian authorities were ready to start the trial.
He said his son was determined to return to Coatia to attend the hearing and prove his innocence.
Andrew, a former Woldgate College pupil who is a well-known DJ on the house music scene, has denied all the charges.
The Croatian authorities have alleged that when he was arrested last September in the western Croatian town of Rovinj, he was found to have a variety of drugs on his person.
They have also said that when police searched the flat where he was staying, they found more drugs, including cocaine, and he also had several thousand pounds on him, leading police to believe the drugs were not for personal use.
The DJ has made a formal complaint to a British vice-consul in Croatia about his treatment in the days after his arrest, claiming for example that police had carried out a search of his villa without a warrant, and successfully pressurised him to sign documents which had not been translated into English.
His father has previously said that Andrew was with 14 other people at the villa, which had been rented for the week, and it was fair to assume the quantity of drugs and cash found was all for personal use between all the people.
He said his son did not deny possessing drugs for personal use – which carried a fine – but emphatically denied ever selling drugs, an offence which carries a sentence of up to two years in prison.