£500 fine for American caught taking cocaine in St Andrews pub

Dundee Sheriff Court
Dundee Sheriff Court

An American TV engineer has been fined £500 after being caught with cocaine while in St Andrews to cover The Open Championship.

Max Muehlen (32) was working as a freelance sound recordist for an American TV network at the event but before it had even started the £300-a-day engineer was caught taking cocaine in a pub toilet near the Old Course.

Fiscal depute John Malpass told Dundee Sheriff Court the offence took place in the Vic on July 12 at around 8pm.

He said: “Staff checked the toilets and could hear snorting noises coming from one of the cubicles.

“The staff member asked for the door to be open and the accused was found within.

“White powder was also found within the cubicle.”

The court was told the Class A drugs found amounted to 0.9 grams with a value of £45.

Muehlen, of Rosenda, California, pleaded guilty on summary complaint to possessing cocaine.

David Bell, defending, said: “He’s here working at The Open as a freelance sound recordist for a company in the US.

“He was on a night out and met someone by chance and bought some cocaine from them.

“He tells me he’s not a regular drug user and he does not have an ongoing problem with drugs.

“He made a stupid mistake for which he has already seen consequences.

“He’s paid a daily rate and has missed out on that due to the time he has spent in custody.”

Muehlen was fined £500 and ordered to pay within seven days.