Canadian police charge Justin Bieber with assaulting limo driver

Wed Jan 29, 2014 11:46pm EST
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By Allison Martell and Jeffrey Hodgson

TORONTO (Reuters) - Canadian police charged Justin Bieber on Wednesday with assaulting a limousine driver in Toronto in December, the latest in a string of legal troubles for the young pop star.

The alleged incident happened in the early hours of December 30, when the limousine picked up six people including Bieber, 19, outside a Toronto nightclub, police said in a statement.

Bieber allegedly struck the limousine driver on the back of the head several times during an altercation on the way to a hotel, police said. The driver got out and called police, but Bieber left before they arrived, according to the statement.

A Canadian lawyer for the pop star issued a statement that said Bieber is innocent.

"As the matter is now before the court, it would be inappropriate to address the specifics of either the allegation or of the defense at this time," it said.

Bieber's legal team expects the matter will be treated as a summary offence, the equivalent of a misdemeanor in the United States.

The pop star is scheduled to appear in a Toronto courtroom on March 10.

Bieber was charged after appearing at a Toronto police station on Wednesday evening. He arrived in a black SUV and was met by a crowd of journalists and screaming fans, who braved temperatures of minus 10 Celsius (14 Fahrenheit).   Continued...

Pop singer Justin Bieber arrives at a police station in Toronto January 29, 2014. REUTERS/Mark Blinch