A lawyer for Britney Spears urged a judge Wednesday to consider finding the singer’s father, as well as the law firm representing him, in contempt of court for allegedly filing previously sealed medical and otherwise confidential information related to the pop star in connection with a motion to compel her deposition that was denied in July.
The 40-year-old performer’s attorney, Mathew Rosengart, also urged Los Angeles Superior Court Judge Brenda J. Penny to force Jamie Spears and the firm of Willkie, Farr & Gallagher to pay the attorneys’ fees and costs associated with fighting what Rosengart told the court was a “frivolous” opposition to his motion to seal the records.
“We should not have had to come to court today,” Rosengart said.
After receiving supplemental briefing, the judge in late July denied the motion by Jamie Spears’ attorney to compel the singer’s deposition. Rosengart argued the confidential records attached as exhibits by Jamie Spears’ attorneys were not even relevant to their effort to have the singer sit for questioning.
“This has turned into an Alice in Wonderland procedure,” Rosengart said.
Penny said she will consider the attorneys’ fees motion during a Dec. 7 hearing that also will deal with a number of other issues, but she did not immediately set a date for a hearing on whether Jamie Spears and the firm representing him should be held in contempt.
“I’ll give it some thought,” said Penny, who ruled before Rosengart’s presentation that the records at issue should remain sealed because Britney Spears’ 13-year conservatorship, which the judge dissolved last Nov. 12, has received “unprecedented media attention” and failing to keep the records out of public view would “jeopardize Ms. Spears’ continuing protection of privacy.”
Jamie Spears’ lead attorney, Alex Weingarten, accepted the judge’s ruling and said little about Rosengart’s comments, claiming the statements had nothing to do with the issue before the judge Wednesday.
Prior to taking the bench, the judge’s clerk announced that a request by the singer’s 67-year-old mother, Lynne Spears, for attorneys’ fees was denied “without prejudice,” meaning the motion can be refiled later. A separate motion for fees by the performer’s former longtime court-appointed conservatorship lawyer, Samuel Ingham Jr., was delayed until Jan. 11.