Britney Spears’ cousin and former personal assistant, Alli Sims, hasn’t spoken to her celebrity relative in more than a decade because, she says, the star’s father threatened her life.
Alli, speaking to NBC News in her first interview in a decade, says she got a call from Jamie in 2008 warning her that “something would happen” to her if she did not cut ties with Britney.
“He 100% was threatening me with my life. I didn’t put it past him, so I didn’t answer her calls again.
“The situation had become way over my head at that point and her dad and other people were involved.”
It was around this time that Jamie began taking control of Britney’s finances after her public meltdowns, and that conservatorship is the subject of a new documentary by The New York Times that follows her rise to stardom and the media pressure that’s been blamed for her breakdown in 2007.
Celebrities, including talk-show host Andy Cohen, Sex and the City star Sarah Jessica Parker and singer Bette Midler shared their support for Britney by tweeting the #FreeBritney hashtag after the documentary aired.
Actress and activist Jameela Jamil shared a petition for the courts to end the conservatorship, which was signed by more than 130 000 people, and Miley Cyrus shouted, “We love Britney!” during her pre-Super Bowl performance earlier this month.
Alli also shared some insights into Britney’s mental and emotional state when an Instagram fan account for the star shared throwbacks from a 2007 photoshoot –promotional footage for Britney’s fragrance, Believe, where the singer is surrounded by bird cages.
“She came up with the concept to let everyone know she was caged then as well as now and had no freedom. Her only freedom was to believe in herself,” Alli says.
READ MORE: ‘I love my daughter and miss her very much’ – Britney Spears' dad reveals he hasn’t spoken to the star in months
“Jamie is drunk with power over Britney’s life. She wants to work, she wants to make music and perform, but he is too controlling,” a source close to the Gimme More crooner says.
“He has set her up to fail. Britney hasn’t had the proper help she needs to be able to control her own finances, to fully deal with her mental health issues, to be the mother she wants to be.
“Jamie won’t let her have any freedom or responsibility over her own life. This summer, her father grounded her for three weeks because she dared to meet a friend for a socially distanced walk on the beach and a heart-to-heart conversation.
“He doesn’t want her to see her friends, he doesn’t want her to meet other people in the entertainment business, he tells her that everyone has bad intentions for her – when it plainly isn’t true.”
Brit’s boyfriend, Sam Asghari, has also spoken out against Jamie for allegedly “trying to control” his relationship with her.
“It’s important for people to understand that I have zero respect for someone trying to control our relationship and constantly throwing obstacles our way,” the 26-year-old said on his Instagram Story earlier this month. “In my opinion, Jamie is a total d**k.”
Although he blasted Jamie on Instagram, Sam added that he “won’t be going into details” about what caused him to speak out because he has previously “always respected our privacy”.
Brit has been dating the Iranian-born actor since the pair met on the set of her Slumber Party music video in 2016.
Aside from posting pictures from their various vacations, Sam is usually tight-lipped about his relationship with the megastar.
After the release of the documentary, he told People magazine, “I am thankful for all of the love and support she is receiving from her fans all over the world, and I am looking forward to a normal, amazing future together.”
Sources: usmagazine.com, people.com, nbcnews.com, thesun.co.uk, pagesix.com, eonline.com