Judge Allows Britney Spears To Choose Lawyer
Britney Spears has been granted the right to hire her own lawyer as she moves forward in her quest to end a conservatorship she's been under for 13 years.
At a hearing on Wednesday, Los Angeles Superior Court Judge Brenda Penny signed off on the resignation of Samuel Ingham III, the court-appointed lawyer who has represented Spears since she was placed under conservatorship in 2008, and approved a request by Mathew S. Rosengart to represent Spears going forward.
A former federal prosecutor who currently specializes in “media and entertainment litigation,” according to a profile on the website of law firm GreenbergTraurig, Rosengart is expected to soon file a motion to end the conservatorship – something Ingham never did on behalf of Spears.
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Judge Penny also allowed Bessemer Trust, the co-conservator of Spears' finances and estate, to step down. The company made the request on July 1, citing Spears' plea to end the conservatorship and writing that it “has heard [Spears] and respects her wishes."
The decision leaves Jamie Spears as the sole conservator of his daughter's finances.
An emotional Spears told Judge Penny on Wednesday she is "extremely scared" of her father. "I’m here to get rid of my dad and charge him with conservatorship abuse," she said, adding that the conservatorship "has allowed my dad to ruin my life."
Those comments echoed statements Spears made in her June 23rd testimony, when she fumed: “My dad and anyone involved in this conservatorship and my management who played a huge role in punishing me when I said no — ma’am, they should be in jail."
Among those reacting to Wednesday's court ruling was Sam Lufti, who acted as Spears’ manager not long before the beginning of the conservatorship. “She did it. Finally,” Lufti said, in a video he shared on Twitter.
He wrote: “This is a premature celebratory post but for now there's a new sheriff in town and heads are about to roll. The war may be coming close to ending but the healing is a tremendous journey that has yet to even begin.”
Lufti, long a controversial figure in Spears’ life, has been called a “parasite” by the pop star’s family, who secured a five-year restraining order against him in 2019.
On Tuesday, Lufti tweeted: “If she hates me after she's free I won't blame her... I failed her, I was supposed to protect her from all this, I let her down and we both paid dearly for it - - head in hands..I'm so sorry.”
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