26 Jan, 2018 @ 12:00
1 min read

Judas Priest drummer dies in exile in Spain after attempted rape of British teenage boy over a decade ago

judas priestt
Judas Priest
Judas Priest

EX-Judas Priest drummer Dave Holland has died in Spain more than 15 years after receiving an attempted rape conviction in the UK. 

The 69-year-old was living in exile in A Fonsagrada in Galicia before he died on January 16.

“It is with regret that we hear of the passing of Dave Holland,” Judas Priest said in a statement.

“Despite his actions since working with the band, his time with us was amongst the most productive and successful in the band’s career and Dave was an integral part of that and for that alone he will be missed.”

Details of how he died have yet to be released.

HOLLAND: In 1979

It comes 14 years after the rock star was convicted of attempted rape and indecent assault against a British teenage boy, to whom he was giving drum lessons.

He denied assaulting the 17-year-old, who had learning difficulties, in his home in 2002.


Prosecutors said at the time that the teenager, who had sometimes stayed overnight at Holland’s house while taking lessons, wrote a letter to his parents in December 2002 describing the abuse.

“It revealed that things were happening at his drum teacher’s house that shouldn’t have been happening,” prosecution lawyer Maria Savvides, said in 2004.

He was handed an eight-year prison sentence for one charge of attempted rape and five counts of indecent assault.

Holland was released from prison in 2012 before moving to Spain.

He played in a series of pop and rock bands including Finders Keepers and Trapeze, which also featured future Deep Purple bassist Glenn Hughes, according to Billboard.

Judas Priest had several heavy-metal classics, including You’ve Got Another Thing Coming, Living After Midnight and Hell Bent for Leather.

“It is with deep regret that I have to accept the sudden and unexpected news that Dave Holland has passed away. Dave was a solid friend in life and solid musician both on the stage and in the studio,”wrote former Judas Priest guitarist K.K. Downing on Facebook.

“‘I will cherish the many gigs we played together and the albums that we made and I will always be grateful to the indelible contribution that Dave gave to Judas Priest.

“My sincere condolences to all of Dave’s loved ones Family and friends and to all of the fans that so much appreciated Dave’s musical ability and his life’s work. R.I.P. Dave,” Downing wrote.


Holland is survived by his three sisters, Sarah, Jane and Charlotte Holland.


Laurence Dollimore

Laurence has a BA and MA in International Relations and a Gold Standard diploma in Multi-Media journalism from News Associates in London. He has almost a decade of experience and previously worked as a senior reporter for the Mail Online in London.

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