Baby driver Bieber caught speeding
BABY DRIVER BIEBER TAGGED: Floppy-haired teen song idol Justin Bieber and his Fisker sports car - 160km/h 'to flee fotogs'.
Los Angeles, California - Pop idol Justin Bieber is used to attracting crowds but he had at least one follower too many when somebody tailed him on a Los Angeles freeway and he collected a speeding ticket.
Officer Ming Hsu of the California Highway Patrol said the singer of "Boyfriend" and "Baby" was cited for driving in excess of 65mph (105km/h at about 1045am on Friday after calls came in complaining of a freeway chase on south-bound US Highway 101 near Studio City.
The 18-year-old told officers he was being chased by paparazzi and investigators confirmed he was being followed by at least one vehicle, Hsu said.
"The second vehicle left the area and there's a search to find that driver," he added, but said there was no description for the other vehicle.
A call and an email to Bieber's publicist weren't immediately returned.
The claim of a chase is backed by an unlikely eye-witness, Los Angeles city councilman Dennis Zine, who called the 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, who spent 33 years as a police officer, 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 estimated the chase exceeded 160km/h as the photographers engaged in wild manoeuvers to keep up with Bieber - including driving on the road 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 added. As a witness to countless crashes and fatalities during his time as an officer, he said he was surprised no one crashed.
"The way (Bieber) was driving was totally reckless," Zine said. "I would have arrested him if I had pulled him over. I wouldn't have given just him a ticket and let him go."
Friday's incident isn't the only time the floppy-haired singer has had been in conflict with paparazzi. In May a photographer called the police to complain that he was roughed up by the pop star in a shopping centre.
Police 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 Israeli prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu in Jerusalem, in part because he didn't want to face the country's notoriously aggressive paparazzi.