The Star Magazine, an “esteemed publication” reported that Britney Spears’ boyfriend and former agent, Jason Trawick, abused her on multiple occasions.  The Star magazine even features a picture that almost looks like Britney has a black eye. This was all reported to Star magazine by Britney Spears’ ex-husband Jason Alexander.  Alexander and Spears divorced after their 55 hour-long Vegas marriage in 2004. 

Alexander claims that he is alerting the media about the abuse, not because of the large check he received from Star Magazine for his story and audio tapes, but because he’s “really concerned” for Britney.  Does anything in this story sound like it could potentially be fabricated?  What is Spears to do, could she sue for libel or slander?

Britney Sues For Libel Or Slander

Generally, a person is free to print whatever they want, with a few notable exceptions.  You cannot write something you know is false about a person in order to humiliate them. Likewise, spreading a nasty rumor about someone is frowned upon (these are called libel and slander respectively).  However, a person who is a celebrity may have access to the same media outlets and therefore the standard for slander or libel would be much higher.  If this is one large hoax, then Spears could sue Star Magazine for libel.  Libel is similar to slander, but in written form.  These statements would have to be false or misleading and hurtful.  Here, these allegations have undoubtedly hurt Spears and caused her distress as well as hurting some of her earning potential (endorsement deals and such).  However, Spears’ biggest legal hurdle would be to prove that Star Magazine knew that Alexander’s statements were false.

The most disturbing allegations might be that there are highly doctored audio recordings that Spears allegedly left for Alexander (via Radar Online).  Not only is sharing someone’s phone calls a breach of trust, but could be a violation of their privacy.  In fact, the use of a taped phone conversation without the person’s knowledge in a court proceeding in some states is actually a felony.

Can't we all just leave Britney alone?