British rocker Pete Doherty was arrested and taken into custody in Paris Friday after being caught buying cocaine, a French police source told AFP.

The former Libertines frontman tried to resist arrest after being caught in the early hours of Friday carrying two packets of cocaine, one of which he had partly consumed, the source said.

Doherty, 40, who was drunk, tried to get rid of the drugs before being arrested in the Ninth Arrondissement, which includes the area around Pigalle known for its lively night life.

Doherty's lawyer Arash Derambarsh denounced what he called "a rough and disproportionate arrest", telling AFP that the singer had "one gramme of cocaine" on him when he was picked up.

"He's not a delinquent. This follows a detoxication cure in France and Britain and he wants to concentrate on his artistic career," he added.

The bad boy of British rock, as famous for having dated supermodel Kate Moss as for his music, has repeatedly made headlines for drugs offences.

In 2012, he was thrown out of a luxury rehab clinic in Thailand after claims he was a bad influence on other patients and did not try hard enough to kick his heroin habit.