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Court to consider removing Britney Spears’ father from conservatorship

Britney Spears’ new attorney claims it’s “in her best interest," legally, for her father Jamie Spears to be removed as conservator.

LOS ANGELES (CN) — Britney Spears will have another day in court Wednesday.

The iconic pop singer, who has experienced a groundswell of support this year thanks to her legion of fans and the release of several documentaries questioning the circumstances of her ongoing conservatorship, is poised to get one step closer to regaining control over her life.

Los Angles Superior Court Judge Brenda Penny will consider removing her father James “Jamie” Spears as Britney Spears’ conservator at a court hearing Wednesday afternoon.

Penny may also consider terminating the conservatorship — which Britney Spears was placed in in 2008 after being committed to a psychiatric facility — altogether.

Jamie Spears formally petitioned to terminate the conservatorship Sept. 7, months after the explosive June 23 court hearing where Britney Spears, during a 25-minute testimony, compared her father to a sex trafficker and publicly revealed she was traumatized by the experience.

Weeks later her mother Lynne Spears — who has been divorced from Jamie since 2002 — petitioned the court to let Britney Spears choose her own lawyer. Shortly after the request was filed, Britney Spears’ court-appointed attorney Samuel Ingham resigned.

Greenberg Traurig attorney Mathew Rosengart currently represents Britney Spears.

In the petition to remove Jamie Spears as conservator, Rosengart pointed out removing him was as simple as following state law where a court determines removal “is in the best interests” of the conservatee.

“Ms. Spears wants, and obviously deserves a ‘full life’ and all that entails, including the restoration of basic rights and civil liberties stripped away by Mr. Spears,” one filing notes.

The request to remove Jaime Spears as conservator comes as troubling information regarding the circumstances of the conservatorship — called a guardianship in most states — was revealed in the latest New York Times documentary about the case released over the weekend.

In it, a former employee who worked for the security firm hired by the conservatorship to guard Britney Spears claimed the company placed listening devices in her bedroom and mirrored her cellphone to monitor her communication.

While Rosengart noted in the petition to remove Jamie Spears as his daughter’s conservator the court may at some point consider whether “Mr. Spears is also guilty of misfeasance or malfeasance” warranting legal action, no charges have been filed against him.

Large crowds are expected Wednesday outside the downtown LA courthouse, where a rally is planned by Britney Spears supporters who are part of the so-called #FreeBritney movement.

But support for Britney Spears breaking free of the conservatorship reaches beyond the Hollywood Hills: her case has sparked conversations about conservatorships and guardianships nationwide and has even prompted Senators Elizabeth Warren and Robert Casey Jr. to ask the Justice Department and Health and Human Services to publicly share data the agencies collect on guardianships in the U.S.

Guardianship reform advocates are hoping Britney Spears’ case will launch an overhaul of the system.

Julie Belshe is one such advocate.

She is scheduled to speak alongside other reform advocates outside the Stanley Mosk Courthouse on Wednesday ahead of the conservatorship hearing.  

Belshe’s parents Rudy and Rennie North — who lived 15 minutes away from her — were placed in a guardianship in Las Vegas in 2013 without her knowledge or consult.

It took two years for them to be released from the guardianship overseen by April Parks, who pleaded guilty in 2018 to exploitation and theft and was sentenced to serve up to 40 years in prison.

“When is it that one of us isn’t going to be vulnerable in our lifetimes? And then there’s predators waiting to just get us,” Belshe said in a phone interview.

She added: “I’m very grateful to Britney — but I’m like ‘you know how many cases and cases and people I’ve spoken to?’ It’s crazy.”

International rallies by #FreeBritney supporters were also planned in multiple cities Wednesday including Houston, London, New York, Ohio and Oslo, Norway.

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