Justin Bieber was apparently blackmailed for $1 million over his racist joke video.
Earlier this week British newspaper The Sun published a clip from five years ago that shows the singer asking: “Why are black people afraid of chainsaws?”
He then delivers the controversial punch line, using the n-word repeatedly.
TMZ claims the person who published it made the 20-year-old star victim of a “million dollar shakedown”.
According to the website, Justin’s reps were contacted by a lawyer around two months ago, representing a man who had worked with the star on a video project.
The man in question reportedly got his hands on Justin’s hard drive while working with him and made a copy of the incriminating clip upon seeing it.
The lawyer allegedly threatened to pass the video on to the media unless their client received $1 million. When Justin’s reps refused, they are thought to have dropped the figure to $800,000.
This apparently continued, until around a week ago the lawyer offered to keep the clip under wraps for $500,000. However, Justin’s reps again declined, with the video released a week later.
As the star is 15 in the video, it’s thought his people weren’t too worried about it being made public.
Justin has since apologized, issuing a statement via Twitter.
He emphasized that he was a “kid” when it was filmed, and that he didn’t understand the “power” of the language used. Justin added that he’s “very sorry” and that making the joke was an “immature mistake”.
The controversy continues for pop bad boy Justin, with The Sun now claiming to have seen another video, which this time shows him changing the lyrics of his track One Less Lonely Girl to include racist language.
The publication reports Justin was laughing and joking about joining the Ku Klux Klan in the altered track, which he retitled “One Less Lonely N*****”.
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