Philip Seymour Hoffman’s friend cleared of selling heroin to late actor

Musician Robert Aaron Vineberg accepts plea bargain

Philip Seymour Hoffman’s friend has been cleared of selling heroin to the late Oscar-winning actor.

Musician Robert Aaron Vineberg accepted a lesser charge of possession of the controlled substance and avoided a prison sentence.

The New York Times reports Vineberg accepted five years on probation and will serve 25 days of community service. Vineberg, a Canadian jazz musician, played saxophone on David Bowie’s 1983 hit ‘Let’s Dance’.


Speaking to reporters after the hearing he said: “It’s all over. The worst part is that I still lost my friend.”

The musician previously admitted in interviews he had occasionally sold heroin to support his own habit but never to Hoffman.

The 46-year-old actor was found dead with a needle in his arm at his New York apartment on February 2. He died of an overdose. Over 50 packets of heroin were found in his home but no-one else has been charged with supplying drugs to Hoffman.

The star of The Master won an Oscar in 2006 for Capote during a career of diverse roles that included playing the villain opposite Tom Cruise in Mission: Impossible III.

Hoffman completed a number of projects before he died. He will be seen next on the big screen as a secret agent in the John Le Carre adaptation A Most Wanted Man in cinemas September 12.

He will also appear as Plutarch Heavensbee in The Hunger Games: Mockingjay Pt 1 released in the UK on November 21.


Watch the trailer for A Most Wanted Man below.