Argentina drops bid to arrest Justin Bieber

Justin Bieber performs during the 2015 Wango Tango concert at the StubHub Center in Carson, California on May 9, 2015.
Justin Bieber performs during the 2015 Wango Tango concert at the StubHub Center in Carson, California on May 9, 2015. PHOTO: REUTERS

BUENOS AIRES (AFP) - Pop star Justin Bieber got some good news of his legal woes on Wednesday when a court in Argentina dropped a warrant for his arrest for allegedly assaulting a photographer.

Judge Alberto Banos said the Canadian singer, 21, would still face the assault charge related to the 2013 incident in Buenos Aires, but was not now subject to an arrest warrant.

Now Bieber is supposed to contact the authorities about when he can testify in the investigation, DyN news reported.

Argentina had sought Bieber's arrest overseas with an Interpol Red Notice but no country detained him or tried to extradite him.

He ignored a November court order to appear before the judge in the case, which dates back to a 2013 stop in Buenos Aires on his Believe tour.

Photographer Diego Pesoa accused Bieber of instructing a bodyguard to forcefully seize his camera and cellphone outside a nightclub in the posh Palermo neighbourhood.

Interpol, the international police body, does not issue arrest warrants itself, but can send out a Red Notice informing its 190 member states that a suspect is wanted in a particular country.

Bieber once enjoyed a squeaky clean image but has more recently had frequent run-ins with the law, including one in Canada when he allegedly assaulted a limousine driver.

Last year, he pleaded guilty to lesser charges after taking part in an illegal drag race on a Miami street.

He was sentenced to two years' probation last year for throwing eggs at the home of a neighbor in California.

The 2013 tour stop, Bieber's only visit to Argentina, was peppered with scandals.

He was thrown out of a hotel, and cut one show short after 45 minutes because of a stomach ache, angering some fans.