Britney Spears hooked on drugs in 2007, former confidante testifies

Tue Oct 23, 2012 8:43pm EDT
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By Brandon Lowrey

LOS ANGELES (Reuters) - Pop star Britney Spears' former confidante encouraged her to kick her drug habit five years ago, and brought drug-sniffing dogs to her Malibu home and flushed a bag of white powder down the toilet, he testified Tuesday.

"She had wanted to get clean, but she was struggling with it," the former friend, Sam Lutfi, told jurors in his civil trial in Los Angeles against Spears and her parents.

"I told her she needed to do it because she was the mother of two young sons... I told her that society wouldn't tolerate a mother who was abusing drugs."

Lutfi claims that Spears hired him as her manager for several months in 2007 and 2008, after she became estranged from her family and staff in the midst of a personal and professional breakdown.

He is seeking 15 percent of her earnings from that period, which were believed to be $800,000 to $1 million per month.

Attorneys representing Spears argue that Lutfi was never the singer's manager.

Lutfi said he met Spears in a nightclub in spring of 2007, while she was embroiled in a tough child custody battle with ex-husband Kevin Federline and struggling to kick drug addiction.

"She wasn't working. She said that she had fired everybody," Lutfi said. "She told me that she had fired her agent. She told me that she had fired her manager, her bodyguards, her publicist, as well."   Continued...

Judge Britney Spears poses at the season two premiere of the television series "The X Factor" at Grauman's Chinese theatre in Hollywood, California September 11, 2012. REUTERS/Mario Anzuoni