Britney Spears's ex-manager described from the witness stand a scene of domestic warfare, saying the superstar's father chased him around a kitchen, punched him and threatened his life.
He denied accusations made in a book by Lynne Spears that he was a Svengali who became the gatekeeper of her daughter's world.
He contends he was a benevolent caretaker.
Lutfi's direct testimony concluded in dramatic fashion as he was overcome by tears.
"After the book came out, there was a huge spike of death threats," he testified.
Court proceedings ended for the day and were set to resume yesterday.
Lutfi is suing for damages for defamation and for a 15pc share of the millions of dollars Britney made while he was with her.
The singer remains under the conservatorship of her father and has been told by a judge not to attend or testify in the trial.