Gary Susman
October 28, 2003 AT 05:00 AM EST

Nicole Richie isn’t exactly famous yet, but she’s already partied with Paris Hilton, shot a reality series, been busted on drug charges, and been sent to court-ordered rehab. And her series, ”The Simple Life,” doesn’t even debut until Dec. 2 (Fox).

Richie, the 21-year-old daughter of singer Lionel Richie, spent a month this spring milking cows and waiting tables with her pal, socialite/model/party animal Hilton, in an Arkansas hamlet for the ”Green Acres”-like reality show, but she may spend even longer in a drug-diversion program after being sentenced on Aug. 8, E! Online reports. She shot the show while she was free on $10,000 bail on charges stemming from a February arrest on the Pacific Coast Highway in Los Angeles. Police pulled over her Mercedes-Benz, searched her wallet, and charged her with a misdemeanor count of driving with a suspended license and a felony count of heroin possession.

Richie pleaded guilty to both charges. She was sentenced to probation for the driver’s-license misdemeanor and ”deferred entry of judgment” on the felony drug charge. That means she’ll have to attend a drug-diversion program, then return to court for a progress report on Dec. 5 (three days after ”Simple Life” premieres) to see whether she must spend any additional time in rehab.

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