Ant McPartlin has arrived at Wimbledon Magistrates’ Court ahead of his hearing for one charge of drink-driving.
The Saturday Night Takeaway presenter was seen striding into the building before proceedings start at 2pm.
He wore a black suit and white shirt as his driver pulled up in a black Mercedes.
It’s the first time he’s been seen in public since voluntarily checking himself into rehab to tackle his problem with alcohol on March 21 – three days after he allegedly crashed his car into two other vehicles in south west London.
The TV star will today enter his plea against the single count of drink-driving.
Ant arrives amid a media scrum (Image: i-Images Picture Agency) Ant wore a black suit with a white shirt for his court appearance (Image: SWNS.com) He pulled up in a black Mercedes
The 42-year-old I’m A Celebrity host looked sombre as he walked into the building flanked by his legal team.
He will be asked to confirm his name and address by the court clerk, who will also read out the charge.
Ant will then be asked whether he pleads guilty or not guilty to the offence.
He was swallowed up by photographers Ant looked sombre as he was escorted in by police (Image: i-Images Picture Agency)
If he pleads not guilty, the magistrate will set a new date for the trial and adjourn the case until then. This will give Ant’s legal team time to gather the evidence they need to fight his corner.
But if Ant pleads guilty to drink-driving, it’s likely the district judge will choose to pass sentence on the same day – as happened with Wayne Rooney last September.
If this happens, the judge can impose a driving ban, slap Ant with an unlimited fine and even impose a jail sentence (although this rarely happens).
The telly star hasn’t been out in public for almost a month (Image: SWNS.com) He was greeted with flashing lights and noise (Image: SWNS.com)
It’s believed that Ant’s initial hearing date was pushed back to accommodate the first part of his rehab treatment plan.
He hasn’t been out in public for nearly four weeks, and it’s not thought his telly partner Declan Donnelly or his estranged wife Lisa Armstrong have been to visit him in his drying-out clinic.
Ant also cancelled all his upcoming TV work, including the final three episodes of Takeaway – one of which was pulled from schedules after Ant’s collision.
Ant is due to enter his plea at 2pm (Image: SWNS.com) (Image: PA)
“Ant has decided to go back into treatment and step down from his current TV commitments,” said his spokesman at the time.
“He has spoken with Dec and ITV today and asked for time off for the foreseeable future. As such Saturday Night Takeaway will not be going ahead this Saturday.”
Instead, Dec hosted the SNT penultimate show and series finale in Florida by himself.
Ant has been seen twice on screen since then, first in a pre-recorded segment for the finale episode and then again in this week’s Britain’s Got Talent audition footage, which had been filmed in January.
(Image: Paul Davey / SWNS.com)
But he won’t be on stage for the BGT live shows, leaving Dec to host alone once more.
Questions have been raised over this year’s I’m A Celebrity series, given that Ant may still not be well enough to fly to Australia for weeks on end.
But ITV has insisted to Mirror Online that it would never replace Ant and Dec with other presenters, despite rumours to the contrary.