Danny Care will be excluded from England's Six Nations squad after being arrested for drink driving, the Rugby Football Union have confirmed.
England's interim head coach Stuart Lancaster has taken the strong disciplinary action because it was Care's second alcohol-related incident in three weeks.
The Harlequins scrum-half was fined for being drunk and disorderly after being arrested in the early hours of December 10, following his club's Heineken Cup defeat to Toulouse. Although Care was also fined a "substantial" amount by Harlequins, England took no further disciplinary action on that occasion.
But after the latest incident over the festive season Lancaster has now decided to come down strongly on the 25-year-old, who missed the World Cup with a foot injury but was certain of a place in England's Six Nations plans.
The RFU issued a statement on Care which read: "England and Harlequins have taken action following Danny Care's arrest on suspicion of driving under the influence of alcohol in the early morning of New Year's Day. Danny will appear in court on January 16 and will be pleading guilty to the charge.
"The club and England are deeply disappointed with Danny's actions and will not tolerate this type of behaviour."
Lancaster said: "I have met Danny and told him that he will not be considered for selection for the Senior or Saxons Elite Player Squads that are due to be announced on the 11th January for the forthcoming Six Nations campaign.
"This is his second arrest in three weeks for alcohol related offences and it is completely unacceptable. We will monitor his progress from this event through Harlequins and we have every confidence in the club to support him in the right way."
Care's management company released a statement on their website, www.bigredmanagement.com.
It read: "I do accept that I made a very bad decision on the evening in question and need to take the punishment that the courts hand out. I am devastated because my actions have let so many people down."
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