Suit against Britney Spears' parents dismissed
Britney Spears speaks at a taping of "We Will Always Love You: A Grammy Salute To Whitney Houston" on Oct. 11, 2012, in Los Angeles. / Getty
A California judge has dismissed libel and breach-of-contract claims filed against the parents of singer Britney Spears by the pop icon's former confidante and self-professed manager.
Los Angeles Superior Court Judge Suzanne Bruguera said an attorney for Sam Lutfi hadn't proven any of his claims in the case that centered on events that took place before the singer's public meltdown more than four years ago.
Lutfi's side rested its case Tuesday, but Bruguera agreed with arguments by attorneys for Spears' father and her conservators that there wasn't sufficient evidence to send any of his claims to a jury.
Lutfi had sued Lynne Spears for libel, 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. Lutfi also had claimed he was owed a 15 percent share of the singer's earnings, but Bruguera disagreed.
Lutfi left the courtroom without speaking to reporters, and attorneys on both sides of the case declined to comment.
The case centered on many of Britney Spears' darkest moments, including a pair of psychiatric hospitalizations that led to her father being named her conservator. Spears' father and her fiance, Jason Trawick, continue to serve as her conservators. The arrangement is overseen by a probate judge who had directed them not to allow the singer to appear at the trial.
Lutfi's attorney Joseph Schleimer had contended in opening statements that his client was made a scapegoat for Spears' downfall. He argued Spears' mother lied about claims that Lutfi drugged the singer and isolated her from family, and said his close relationship with the paparazzi was a way to get them to be less unruly and more respectful of the Grammy winner.
Yet Lutfi failed to show he had a binding management agreement that would have entitled him to 15 percent of the singer's profits from her 2007 album ``Blackout'' and other projects.
Lutfi sued in 2009, the same year that Spears' conservators obtained a restraining order against him to stop trying to contact her or meddle in her affairs.
He told jurors he endured death threats after the publication of Lynne Spears' book, ``Through the Storm: A Real Story of Fame and Family in a Tabloid World,'' and he claimed the experience left him depressed and suicidal.
Spears, 30, has turned her life around and is now a judge on the hit Fox show "The X Factor." In 2011, she was presented the MTV Video Vanguard award.
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