Filipino star Nora Aunor ordered to participate in U.S. drug treatment program

Nora Aunor, one of the Philippines' most popular film and music stars, was set to enroll in a Los Angeles drug court program that, if successful, would let her avoid jail. "Nora will be going through a program requiring much introspection and discipline," her attorneys from the law firm Edelberg & Espina wrote in a statement released Thursday.

Aunor, 53, was arrested March 30 at Los Angeles International Airport after security screeners allegedly found 8 grams of methamphetamine and a glass pipe in her carryon bag. "This is a challenging process for anyone and more particularly for Nora, who is far away from her country and her family, especially during this Christmas season."

Known as "The Superstar" to her fans, she has appeared in more than 170 films and recorded more than two dozen albums, including scores of hit singles. On screen, she has starred with leading men of her time, including Joseph Estrada, who became the country's president. Although she retains her Philippine citizenship, Aunor has spent much of her time in recent years at her home in Linda Vista, several miles north of San Diego.

Aunor, whose real name is Nora Cabaltera Villamayor, will receive counseling and treatment at a live-in or outpatient center and will undergo frequent drug tests, said Jane Robison, a spokeswoman for the district attorney's office in Los Angeles. Her criminal case will be dismissed if she completes the program by remaining drug free for at least six months, Robison said, reports the AP. N.U.

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