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Britney Spears accused of drug use, or a really bad broken heart

October 19, 2012|By Christie D'Zurilla

The civil trial pitting Britney Spears' ex-manager Sam Lutfi against the singer's conservatorship and her parents opened ugly Thursday, with accusations of drug abuse and a desperate attempt to hide addiction leveled against Spears by Lutfi's lawyer. 

But Friday it turned synchronistically weird as a lawyer for papa Jamie Spears said the pop star's downward spiral was actually set off by her 2002 breakup with Justin Timberlake, who coincidentally got married to Jessica Biel in Italy right around the same time his name was being uttered in court.

In opening statements — mere allegations still, not yet backed up by evidence — Spears was accused of using amphetamines and having a stash of crystal meth. Lutfi's case alleges the singer's infamous head-shaving episode in February 2007 was an attempt to remove traces of drug use from her person, and says she overused amphetamines on the January 2008 day she melted down and was taken away on a 5150 psychiatric hold.

Spears "liked to use amphetamines — speed or uppers. She liked to take that drug. And most of the things that went wrong were related to that drug," Lutfi's attorney Joseph Schleimer said Thursday in court, according to Pop & Hiss.

Paparazzi shots of a messy Brit shaving her head in the Valley and attacking an SUV with an umbrella were shown to the jury Thursday, L.A. Now reported.

Lutfi claims he was trying to keep Britney sane and off drugs. Interesting tidbit: In 2010, he told TMZ there was "nothing wrong" with the singer when she shaved her head. "I think she was just expressing her independence and her freedom," he told the website.

Cut to Friday and Jamie Spears' side of the story. Attorney Leon Gladstone said the singer's father was the one trying to save his daughter from drug addiction, mental illness and Lutfi's influence. And that it had all started going bad when she and Timberlake split up. "Cry Me a River" and all that.

Lutfi sued for millions in 2009, alleging defamation in a book written by Lynne Spears — she alleged he drugged and isolated her daughter — and claiming to be owed a portion of Britney's recording profits while he was working with her, particularly related to the 2007 album "Blackout."

The conservatorship successfully obtained a restraining order keeping Lutfi away from Britney in 2008, and in July he was ordered to pay the conservatorship nearly $93,000 in legal fees, a judgment he is appealing.

Because she's still under that conservatorship, Britney Spears isn't expected to testify in the case.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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