Ex-Spears bodyguard rebuffed in court


A former bodyguard for Britney Spears went to court Monday to support a sealed declaration about questionable behavior by the pop star, but attorneys in the child-custody dispute between the singer and ex-husband Kevin Federline did not call him to testify.

Tony Barretto, 28, arrived with a lawyer but Family Court Commissioner Scott M. Gordon held only a brief open session before clearing the courtroom of everyone but attorneys for Spears and Federline to privately discuss unsealing documents in the ongoing case.

Outside court, Barretto's attorney Gloria Allred issued a statement calling him a "key and secret witness."

"We are shocked that Ms. Spears' attorneys chose not to cross-examine our client as to the substance of his declaration," Allred said. "Our client was prepared to testify on issues of nudity by Ms. Spears, drug use, and safety issues involving the children post-rehab."

The singer married Federline in October 2004. She filed for divorce last November and the divorce became official July 30. The two have joint custody of sons Sean Preston, 2, and Jayden James, 1.

Spears went through episodes of bizarre behavior early this year and finally spent time in rehab.

Spears hired Barretto when she left a rehabilitation facility in March but fired him May 17 because "he didn't hear her when she asked him to pick up her hat," Allred said.

Allred said that while working for Spears, Barretto became concerned about the safety and well-being of the pop star's children.

Federline and Spears were not present in court.

Spears' new attorneys, Melvin Goldsman and Marci Levine, could not be reached for comment.

Spears had been represented by attorney Laura Wasser, but Wasser said Monday she would no longer be working for Spears.

"We were hired to do a job and we did it," Wasser said outside court.

She said Spears "will be in excellent hands."

Asked about Spears, she said, "Britney's fine."