Former A-HA manager JOHN RATCLIFF has been accused of terrorising his longterm partner and smashing up their home in a series of drunken rages.
The producer, who discovered the Norwegian pop band in the 1980s, wrecked the couple's furniture then cut their phone line when his partner, Celia Welch, threatened to call cops in June (10).
Welch fled the property in Somerset, south-west England a few days later when Ratcliff again allegedly turned violent.
Prosecutor Sanchia Pereira told South Somerset magistrates' court, "Miss Welch had called the police and said Ratcliff was smashing up the house. When officers arrived they found the victim in a neighbour's house and she said that the defendant had smashed the phone, thrown crockery around and also damaged the television. She said he was drunk and that numerous items were lying smashed on the floor."
Ratcliff's lawyer Mike Hughes said, "Unfortunately he is an alcoholic and his drinking got to such a point in 1992 that he recognised this fact and became 'dry' and alcohol free for 18 years during which time his career prospered. Latterly due to circumstances beyond his control, his career has failed and financial problems have arisen potentially leading to bankruptcy... He has sought the help for his alcohol problem. As a result his partner has changed her mind about their relationship and is anxious for it to continue."
Ratcliff, who has been with Welch for 28 years, pleaded guilty to destroying a phone, a television, and a coffee table.
He is due to be sentenced at a later date.