Judge throws out lawsuit against Britney Spears, parents

Thu Nov 1, 2012 9:27pm EDT
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By Eric Kelsey

LOS ANGELES (Reuters) - A Los Angeles judge on Thursday dismissed a lawsuit by the one-time confidante of pop star Britney Spears, ruling there was insufficient evidence to go forward with the trial on allegations of defamation, assault and breach of contract.

"I really thought long and hard. It's the right thing to do, so I am going to do it," Los Angeles Superior Court Judge Suzanne Bruguera said, announcing her decision to throw out the case after hearing two weeks of evidence in the civil trial.

Bruguera's ruling was a major victory for Spears and her family, despite damaging and sometimes humiliating testimony that lifted the lid on the singer's controversial career and personal meltdown five years ago.

Sam Lutfi, the self-styled manager of the pop star for a brief period in 2007 and early 2008, had sued Spears' mother, Lynne Spears, for defaming him in her 2008 book "Through the Storm." Lynne Spears wrote that Lutfi controlled her daughter, cut her telephone lines and tried to cut the star off from her family.

Bruguera also dismissed claims filed by Lutfi against Spears. He said the singer hired him as her manager after they met in a nightclub in 2007, and he was entitled to a portion of her earnings.

Lutfi case against Spears' father, Jamie Spears, was also thrown out. Lutfi alleged that Jamie Spears punched him in 2008 while the singer was in a Los Angeles psychiatric ward.

Lutfi, 38, said he would appeal the ruling.

Spears, 30, has since staged a comeback with world tours, hit albums and a new job as judge on Fox's TV talent show "The X-Factor." She did not attend the trial.   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