As Britney Spears continues her battle for independence, shocking new claims about her formerly secret life under a more than decade-long conservatorship have been made in a new documentary.
In The New York Times Presents: "Controlling Britney Spears," the follow-up to February's episode "Framing Britney Spears" and which was released on Hulu and FX on Friday, Sept. 24, a former member of her security team alleges that the firm he worked for, which was hired by the singer's father and co-conservator, Jamie Spears, monitored her phone activity and even planted a listening device in her bedroom, both seemingly without her knowledge.
"I heard Britney's testimony and I think that was the final indicator that I wanted to come forward with what I know," said Alex Vlasov, who says he worked for Black Box Security and its president Edan Yemini, referring to comments Britney made as she spoke publicly about what she called her "abusive" 13-year conservatorship for the first time in a virtual court hearing on June 23.
Edan, whose company's website describes him as having a background in the Israeli Special Forces, said in a statement shown in the documentary, "Black Box have always conducted themselves within professional, ethical and legal bounds and they are particularly proud of their work in keeping Ms. Spears safe for many years."
In response to detailed questions from The New York Times, Jamie's lawyer said in a statement, "All of his actions were well within the parameters of the authority conferred upon him by the court. His actions were done with the knowledge and consent of Britney, her court-appointed attorney, and/or the court. Jamie's record as conservator — and the court's approval of his actions — speak for themselves."
Britney's attorney Matthew Rosengart, who she hired earlier this year, told The New York Times, "Any unauthorized intercepting or monitoring of Britney's communications — especially attorney-client communications, which are a sacrosanct part of the legal system — would represent a shameful violation of her privacy rights and a striking example of the deprivation of her civil liberties."
"Placing a listening device in Britney's bedroom would be particularly inexcusable and disgraceful, and corroborates so much of her compelling, poignant testimony," the attorney continued. "These actions must be fully and aggressively investigated."
Britney was placed under her conservatorship in 2008, months after she underwent a psychiatric hospitalization following years of personal turmoil. Following her recent court testimony, the singer hired a new lawyer of her own choosing and he filed to remove Jamie as her co-conservator.
Jamie recently petitioned the court to end the conservatorship entirely. Britney's father has maintained he has always wanted what is best for his daughter. After her June testimony, his lawyer said in statement, "Mr. Spears is sorry to see his daughter suffering and in so much pain. Mr. Spears loves his daughter and misses her very much."
A hearing on the star's case is scheduled for Sept. 29.
Read some of the most shocking accusations made in "Controlling Britney Spears":