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Thursday, October 8, 2009
France arrested on drug charges

Associated Press

MIAMI -- A grandson of NASCAR founder Bill France was arrested early Thursday on drug charges in Daytona Beach, according to a police report.

J.C. France faces charges of possession of narcotics and driving under the influence. France posted $4,500 bond and was released from Volusia County jail Thursday afternoon.

France, 43, was driving a 2007 green Lamborghini when he was stopped shortly after midnight Thursday. Authorities believe he was racing his half-brother, 40-year-old Russell Van Richmond. France failed to stop at a traffic light and swerved on the roadway before coming to a stop in a parking lot.

Richmond, who was driving a 2003 Porsche when he was stopped, reportedly threatened the officer during the arrest.

"No, this is a mistake for you," he told the officer, according to the report. "I'm a France, we own this city."

Authorities continued with the investigation, and Richmond called for their commanding officers.

"You're done," he reportedly told an officer. "Your job is over. This is the biggest mistake ever and your [sic] so done in Daytona."

While conducting a search during the traffic stop, authorities found containers with a "white cakelike substance." The substances gave a presumptive positive reactions for cocaine when they were tested.

Richmond faces two counts of unlawful possession of a controlled substance, driving under the influence and two counts of threatening a police officer. He posted $10,500 bond and was released from custody Thursday.

France is the son of NASCAR board member Jim France and a driver in NASCAR's Grand-Am Series. Richmond is the son of Jim France's ex-wife. The two share a home in Daytona Beach, according to the police report. A telephone number listed for Richmond rang unanswered Thursday evening. A man who answered the phone at a number listed for France said he was not available.

NASCAR spokesman Ramsey Poston released a statement saying France has been suspended from all competition.

"Grand-Am has issued a penalty notice and suspended J.C. indefinitely from all competition for actions detrimental to racing," Poston said. "The penalty is not appealable. J.C. is being treated like any other competitor. His suspension is immediate and indefinite."