| 6.5°C Dublin

Ex-manager loses fight for slice of Britney cash

BRITNEY Spears' former confidante and self-professed manager failed to prove his libel and breach-of-contract claims against the singer's parents and her caretakers, a judge who dismissed the case mid-trial has ruled.

Los Angeles Superior Court Judge Suzanne Bruguera said an attorney for Sam Lutfi had not proven any of his allegations in the case that centred on events before the singer's public meltdown more than four years ago.

Mr Lutfi's side rested its case on Tuesday but Ms Bruguera agreed with arguments by lawyers for Spears' father and her conservators that there was not sufficient evidence to send the claims to a jury.

Mr Lutfi had sued Lynne Spears for libel and the singer's father, Jamie, for allegedly hitting him at the singer's mansion in an incident shortly before Jamie Spears and others were granted control over the singer's life. Mr Lutfi also claimed he was owed a 15pc share of the singer's earnings, but Ms Bruguera disagreed.

Mr Lutfi left the courtroom without speaking to reporters and lawyers on both sides of the case declined to comment.

The case centred on many of Britney Spears' darkest moments, including a pair of psychiatric hospitalisations that led to her father being named her conservator.

Her fiance, Jason Trawick, was added as a co-conservator earlier this year. The arrangement is overseen by a probate judge who had directed them not to allow the singer to appear at the trial.

Mr Lutfi's attorney Joseph Schleimer had contended in opening statements that his client was made a scapegoat for Spears' downfall.

Mr Schleimer argued Spears' mother lied about claims that Mr Lutfi drugged the singer and isolated her from family.

However, Mr Lutfi failed to show he had a binding management agreement that would have entitled him to 15pc of the singer's profits from her 2007 album Blackout and other projects, the judge ruled.

Spears' parents sat through the entire trial, which opened with Mr Schleimer showing videos and photos of Spears' turbulent period, including shaving her head and hitting a vehicle with an umbrella.

hnews@herald.ie


Privacy