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Justin Bieber: About that laptop theft? Nude pics? Mostly a hoax

October 12, 2012|By Christie D'Zurilla | This post has been updated, as detailed below.

Oh, Justin Bieber, you're such a prankster. Such an expertly conceived, precision-executed, hoax-style prankster. 

Seems that "stolen" laptop and camera we learned about Wednesday weren't stolen at all. Rather, the notion that "personal footage" from Bieber might be circulating out there was the first piece in a prank puzzle that came together Friday as the Biebs launched his newest music video, "Beauty and a Beat," featuring Nicki Minaj.

[Updated, 4:05 p.m. Oct. 12: The laptop really was stolen Tuesday night in Washington state, Bieber's publicist told the Associated Press late Friday. "Be very clear, the laptop was indeed stolen in Tacoma. That was NOT a hoax," she said via email. Tacoma police told the AP that a police report was filed Wednesday.]

An alleged naked picture of Justin got the media treatment Thursday, with some outlets losing it a little along the way, as you can see in the laugh-riot KTLA video above. Then "threats" regarding the footage surfaced in the afternoon through a brand-new Twitter account, @gexwy. The user posted videos allegedly from the laptop and taunted Bieber for having lousy password protection on his equipment.

"notice us and answer your dms [direct messages] or we are going to put the other videos from the camera out!" @gexwy threatened, which should have been a clue that something was hinky, as Bieber would have to be following said user to get DMs in the first place. 

Then came threats to "show the world" on Friday.

And Bieber responded: "no matter what you have and what you post tomorrow i know my fans wont leave me. screw it."

"haha. that is what u think. we will see tomorrow at NOON. last chance," @gexwy told Bieber, adding a note to fans, "and the rest of u can just shutup. u have no idea what i have and when u see tomorrow u will feel different."

Cut to Friday, 9 a.m. PDT: "I told you I would post something WORTH watching and talking about," @gexwy posted, tagging Bieber and Minaj and linking to the video you can see below. It's a fun romp through a water park with Bieber and many dozens of dancers.

Minaj even slyly got into the game on Twitter, hinting Thursday night, "uh oh...the barbz have a BIG surprise cmng tmrw," referencing Barbara Walters as she had during the fallout of her maybe-feud with Mariah Carey. 

So, has this been well-played, or do you feel played? Let us know in comments.

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Follow Christie D'Zurilla on Twitter and Google+. Follow the Ministry of Gossip on Twitter @LATcelebs and on Facebook facebook.com/ministryofgossip.

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