Phil Rudd

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A hit-man charge against AC/DC drummer Phil Rudd has been dropped, his lawyer said Friday.

Prosecutors in New Zealand's Tauranga district "formed the view that there was insufficient evidence to justify that charge," Paul Mabey, Rudd's lawyer, said in a statement obtained by NBC News.

On Thursday, Rudd was charged with attempting to "procure murder" (this charge, which carries a maximum 10-year-prison term, is the one that's been dropped). He was also charged with threatening to kill and possessing methamphetamine and cannabis—per Rudd's lawyer, these latter charges remain in effect. 

Details of the case against Rudd have not been publicly released, and the identifies of the alleged hit man and alleged victims are protected by court order. Rudd's lawyer said that the musician's identity should have also been protected, adding, per NBC News, that "the damage to Mr. Rudd is incalculable."

"Mr. Rudd has suffered unnecessary and extreme damaging publicity as a result of widespread and sensational reporting of a very serious allegation, which on any basis was never justified," added his attorney. "Mr. Rudd is considering any possible remedies he may have."

This news came just before AC/DC's fifteenth studio album, Rock or Bust, is supposed to hit stores; it's scheduled for a Nov. 28 release in Australia and Dec. 2 release elsewhere. The band, which had previously announced their plans to tour in early 2015, said in a statement Thursday; "We've only become aware of Phil's arrest as the news was breaking. We have no further comment. Phil's absence will not affect the release of our new album Rock or Bust and upcoming tour next year."

Rudd was kicked out of AC/DC in 1983 but rejoined in 1994.

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