Britney Spears' Defamation Trial: 8 Claims in Her Ex-Manager's Case (VIDEO)
Britney Spears' legal battle against her ex-manager has begun — and the heated allegations are already flying.
Osama "Sam" Lutfi is suing the pop star and her parents — Lynne and Jamie Spears — for breach of contract, defamation and libel. Lutfi — who signed on as Spears' manager in June 2007 — is taking issue with Lynne's tell-all book Through The Storm, which discusses Lutfi's role in the singer's life leading up to her breakdown.
After Spears was placed under co-conservatorship of her father and attorney Andrew Wallete in 2008, the singer's team obtained a three-year restraining order against Lutfi in 2009, following allegations that the singer's former manager had drugged her and tried to gain control of her "life, home and finances," Jamie wrote in a complaint at the time.
Now Lutfi is taking aim at the Spears family in a California court of law with some weighty claims. The trial, which is expected to last nearly three weeks, will see Lutfi, Britney's fiance Jason Trawick and both her parents take the stand for testimony.
Are skeletons poised to come out of Spears' closet?
Right out of the gate, Lutfi's attorney Joe Schleimer dropped some shocking claims in his opening statement, including allegations of Spears abusing drugs. But according to TMZ, Spears' team is ready to come back strong, making the case that Lutfi forced drugs on the singer in a bid to isolate her from her friends and family.Celebuzz is breaking them down.
1. Lutfi urged Spears to seek help just two days before she was put on involuntary psychiatric hold. Spears was hospitalized in early January 2008, after the pop star locked herself in a room of her L.A. with one of her children, refusing to hand her son over to ex-husband Kevin Federline. Following the incident, Spears was placed on involuntary psychiatric hold at UCLA Medical Center. Now Lutfi's lawyer claims the former manager saw warning signs and suggested Spears seek professional help just before the now infamous meltdown.
2. Spears abused in amphetamines. "She liked to use amphetamines," Schleimer told the jury, according to TMZ. "Most everything that went wrong was because of this drug." In January 2008, Schleimer claimed Spears filled an amphetamine prescription and proceeded to down 6 to 8 pills early in the day, and followed up with many more later.
3. Spears used crystal meth. Schleimer claimed the superstar singer wasn't just abusing prescription amphetamines, but also crystal meth, which is an extremely addictive, man-made methamphetamine that carries high health risks.
4. Spears shaved her head to hide her drug use. Fearing her hair contained traces of the hardcore drugs she was abusing, Spears shaved off her locks during her now-infamous 2007 meltdown, Lutfi alleged.
5. Lutfi tried to save Spears before her meltdown. As Spears spiraled out of control, Schleimer claims Lutfi told the singer she needed to ditch the drugs. Lutfi even wanted to bring in a specially designed squad — what he termed "the varsity team" — to help a struggling Spears. But his efforts came to no avail.
6. Lutfi cleaned Spears' pad of all drugs. Schleimer asserted that Lutfi once brought in drug-sniffing dogs to Spears' home, in an effort to rid the digs of any drugs. In the process, they discovered a small bag of crystal meth, Lutfi's case claims.
7. The singer's father, Jamie Spears, attacked Lutfi. During his tenure as Spears' manager, Lutfi insists Jamie assaulted him.
8. Lutfi declared that he hooked Spears up with now-fiancé Jason Trawick. Lutfi insisted he introduced the now-engaged couple at Trawick's 2007 Halloween party.