Austin Seeking Royal Pardon
LATEST: Grammy-winning producer DALLAS AUSTIN is seeking a pardon from Dubai's ruler after pleading guilty to cocaine charges yesterday (02JUL06). Austin, who has worked with MADONNA, MICHAEL JACKSON and PINK, faces up to four years in prison when he is sentenced tomorrow (04JUL06), but hopes begging for SHAIKH MOHAMMED BIN RASHID AL MAKTOUM's forgiveness could lead to a reduced sentence. He will reiterate that he broke the law "by mistake", having no knowledge of the law in the United Arab Emirates. Similar cases and pleas have been successful, with the defendant retaining a criminal record but being released from prison and deported. The songwriter, whose life story was loosely depicted in the 2002 movie DRUMLINE, was arrested on 19 May (06) in Dubai's airport and charged with cocaine possession. He was on his way to a three-day birthday bash for supermodel NAOMI CAMPBELL.