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Paul and Linda McCartney and Denny Seiwell are arrested for cannabis possession

On 10 August 1972, following a Wings performance at the Scandinavium Hall in Gothenburg, Sweden, armed police appeared in the auditorium. As Wings made their way into their dressing room the way was blocked, and Paul, Linda and Denny Seiwell were arrested for possession of cannabis.

Earlier that day the McCartneys had collected a package addressed to Seiwell from their hotel. The package containing marijuana, and the authorities had been surveilling the McCartneys ever since their arrival in Sweden. They had recorded a telephone call placed by Linda to MPL in London, arranging for two cassette cases filled with weed to be sent to the band in Gothenburg.

The trio eventually admitted the seven ounces of marijuana were theirs, and managed to convince the police it was for their own personal use. They were given fines totalling around £1,000 and the tour was allowed to continue.

The case brought much publicity to the band, and the McCartneys became outspoken advocates of the drug. Five weeks later, a police constable in Scotland, decided to pay a visit to the couple’s High Park Farm. Five cannabis plants were discovered, and Paul was charged on two counts of possession and one of growing the drug. He was later given a £100 fine.

The two drug busts, although with potentially disastrous consequences for McCartney’s freedom and ability to tour, brought some welcome publicity to Wings and helped improve Paul’s reputation after the misguided release of the ‘Mary Had A Little Lamb’ single. “The police action against us was an excellent advertisement,” one unnamed member of Wings was quoted as saying. “Our name flies now all over the world.”

Last updated: 8 January 2024
Wings live: Scandinavium, Gothenburg
Wings live: Olympen, Lund
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