- Associated Press - Monday, October 22, 2012

LOS ANGELES (AP) - Testimony has opened in a defamation lawsuit against Britney Spears‘ parents, with a top record executive saying he was never told that plaintiff Sam Lutfi was her manager.

Music industry executive Barry Weiss testified Monday in Los Angeles that he _ Weiss _ was Spears‘ lifeline during the dark period when erratic behavior threatened her career.

Weiss testified he never heard of Lutfi before then and only knew him later as someone who made sure Spears was on the set for a music video.

Lutfi claims he was Spears‘ personal manager and deserves millions. The defamation claim involves the way Lutfi is depicted in a book written by Spears‘ mother about the singer’s meltdown.

Weiss said Spears had no manager during that period.

Spears remains under court-ordered conservatorship.

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