Justin Bieber cited for speeding

SHAYA TAYEFE MOHAJER
Last updated 17:57 07/07/2012
Justin Bieber
Reuters
TOO FAST: Justin Bieber has been ticketed for speeding on an LA freeway after reports of a car chase.

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Heartthrob singer Justin Bieber has been ticketed for speeding on a Los Angeles freeway after being chased by at least one other vehicle, authorities said.

The 18-year-old Boyfriend and Baby crooner was cited for driving in excess of 65mph on Friday morning, after calls came in complaining of a freeway chase on southbound US Highway 101 near Studio City, said Officer Ming Hsu of the California Highway Patrol.

Bieber told officers he was being chased by paparazzi, Hsu said.

"The second vehicle left the area and there's a search to find that driver," Hsu said.

Hsu did not have a description of the other vehicle.

A call and an email to Bieber's publicist weren't immediately returned.

The claim of a chase is backed by eyewitness Los Angeles City Councilman Dennis Zine, who called authorities after seeing Bieber's distinctive chrome Fisker Karma being chased by five or six other cars.

On his morning commute to City Hall, Zine said he saw Bieber's sports car drive up behind him and zoom around him, weaving wildly in and out of traffic while five or six other cars gave chase.

Zine, who spent 33 years as an officer for the LAPD, estimated the chase exceeded 100mph as paparazzi engaged in wild manoeuvres to keep up with Bieber, including driving on the shoulder and cutting off other vehicles.

Zine said Bieber was breaking the law by driving recklessly and speeding, and the paparazzi were breaking the law by hounding him.

"This was very bizarre, very outrageous and showed a total disregard for life and property," Zine said.

Zine, a witness to countless crashes and fatalities during his time as an officer, said he was surprised no one crashed.

"The way (Bieber) was driving was totally reckless, I would have arrested him if I had pulled him over," said Zine. "I wouldn't have given him a ticket and let him go."

Friday's incident isn't the only time the floppy-haired singer has had conflict with paparazzi. In May, a photographer called authorities, complaining he was roughed up by the pop star in a shopping centre, The Commons at Calabasas.

Authorities said the scuffle happened when a photographer tried to snap photos of Bieber and his girlfriend, teen actress Selena Gomez.

In April 2011, Bieber called off a meeting with the Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu in Jerusalem, saying he cancelled, in part, because he didn't want to face the country's notoriously aggressive paparazzi.

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- AP

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