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Former Atlanta Hawks forward John Drew, banned from National...

ATLANTA -- Former Atlanta Hawks forward John Drew, banned from National Basketball Association play until at least 1988 for involvement with drugs, has been arrested for trying to buy cocaine from an undercover officer, police said.

Police Lt. John Woodward said Drew, 32, was arrested Friday night when he tried to buy less than $100 worth of cocaine from an undercover agent.

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Atlanta police spokesman Kevin Forier said Drew was arrested during a sweep of known drug locations that netted 33 other suspects.

Drew, a two-time NBA All-Star who played for the Hawks from 1974 until 1982, had been released on $25,000 bond after a drug arrest in October. He was released on $1,000 bond on the latest charge of criminal solicitation.

Fulton County Solicitor Lewis Slaton said Drew faces one to three years in prison if convicted on the latest charge.

Slaton said he had opposed bond for Drew last October 'on the grounds that he would be back with the same crowd doing the same things.'

Drew, a former star at Gardner-Webb College in North Carolina, was arrested at his Atlanta home last Oct. 2 on charges of selling about $750 worth of cocaine to an undercover agent of the Georgia Bureau of Investigation.

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Slaton said the 6-foot-6, 205-lb. Drew, who averaged 21.2 points a game during his eight-year career with the Hawks, was released at that time on condition that he attend a drug rehabiliation program and take a urinalysis test every three months.

In January, the NBA banned Drew, whose rights were then held by the Utah Jazz, after he entered a hospital in Salt Lake City. The league said that constituted his third entry into a drug-treatment center, which under NBA rules required him to be banned from the league. The ban is for life, but is reviewable after two years.

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