I didn’t sell drugs to Hoffman: Vineberg

The musician accused of selling drugs to Philip Seymour Hoffman says the actor was a “hard-core” heroin addict and insists he’s not responsible for the Oscar winner’s death.

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Robert Vineberg, also known by his stage name of Robert Aaron, says he’s been made the “scapegoat”.

Vineberg was one of four people arrested following a raid on a New York apartment last week.

Police conducted the raid after investigators found heroin at Hoffman’s home.

Vineberg, 57, has been charged with posessing heroin with intent to supply.

He denies the charge and has now spoken out to insist he had nothing to do with Hoffman’s death from a suspected overdose.

Vineberg, who has worked with stars including Wyclef Jean and Amy Winehouse, tells the New York Post, “He was my friend. I could’ve saved him. If I knew he was in town, I would’ve said, ‘Hey, let’s make an AA (Alcoholics Anonymous) meeting.’ If I was with him, it wouldn’t have happened. Not under my guard.

“He was a normal guy … He loved his kids. I offer my condolences to his family,” Vineberg said.

Vineberg goes on to claim he last saw the Capote star in October and received a message from the actor two months later, when he claimed to be sober: “He left me a voicemail in December saying, ‘I’m clean’.”

The musician is convinced Hoffman’s attempts to clean up actually worked against him when he relapsed, adding, “When you’re clean for that long, your body can’t take as much. Your body doesn’t have the tolerance. He was using needles. He was a hard-core addict … Don’t you understand? I’m a scapegoat.”

Vineberg’s lawyer adds, “All of the evidence adduced to date has indicated that Robert did not provide to Mr Hoffman the narcotics that caused his unfortunate death.

“Robert and Mr. Hoffman were true friends who had bonded over and struggled with the dangerous use of narcotic drugs,” the lawyer said.

Hoffman was found dead at his New York City apartment on February 2. An autopsy proved inconclusive and officials are waiting for the results of toxicology tests to determine how the actor died.

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