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Justin Bieber

Paparazzo Charged

in Freeway Chase

7/25/2012 11:00 AM PDT BY TMZ STAFF
EXCLUSIVE

0706-justin-bieber-bauer-stop-article-3
The paparazzo who was the alleged ringleader in the wild Justin Bieber Freeway chase in L.A. earlier this month has been hit with multiple criminal charges.

According to the L.A. City Attorney, 30 year old Paul Raef -- a freelance paparazzo -- was hit with a total of 4 counts stemming from the July 6 incident.

-- 2 counts of following another vehicle too closely and reckless driving, with the intent to capture pictures for commercial gain
-- 1 count of reckless driving
-- 1 count of failing to obey the lawful order of a peace officer.

This is the first case filed under the new paparazzi law ...which makes it a crime to create a dangerous situation while following a celebrity for profit.

TMZ broke the story ... Bieber was cited for driving 80 mph in his chrome Fisker Karma. Justin told police he was trying to escape a gang of paparazzi who had been relentlessly pursuing him for miles.

Officials say Raef was among the pack of photogs giving chase ... and was driving his Toyota Rav at speeds "well in excess of 80 miles per hour across all lanes and even, at times, on the shoulder."

Officials say other motorists were forced to apply their brakes and swerve to avoid colliding with the vehicles.

Officials say cops caught up with Bieber and Raef during the chase and tried to pull them both over. Justin obliged ... but Raef allegedly blew off the lights and sirens and fled the scene.

30 minutes later, officials say cops noticed Raef's car at another paparazzi crush ... and identified him as the guy from the previous chase. 

If convicted on all counts, Raef could face up to one year in the county jail and fines totaling $3,500.

88 COMMENTS

No Avatar
16.

oink    

Hmmm i guess Bieber wasn't speeding and didn't put other drivers in danger.

728 days ago
17.

Flying Blind    

Justin who? old news ...............

728 days ago
18.

anni    

It is ONLY a chase if you run, dumbass. Going to get killed because someone takes your picture?

728 days ago
19.

Yup    

Ok, that's one half of the problem. Now, the police need to charge little dumbass bieber for racing on the freeway, cutting off other cars, weaving in & out of traffic & potentially endangering other drivers. He made a decision to break the law; he needs to pay for his offenses, just like the jag azz papparazzi...

728 days ago
20.

outofmyelement    

protecting the rich from the poor people. WHERE IS THE JUSTICE.

728 days ago
21.

tootheache    

these S***BAG MAGGOTS with cameras need to be fined and jailed out of existence

728 days ago
22.

Toilethead    

If the stupid little gay kid didn't want to be chased he should drive a normal car that can get lost in traffic. What a moron.

728 days ago
23.

tucker    

Why wasn't that menace Bieber charged? This isn't his first time driving like a maniac. Move over Lindsay ...

728 days ago
24.

Sizzle Chest    

A RAV 4 can do 80mph!?

728 days ago
25.

jaide    

What the heck is wrong with people

728 days ago
26.

gamepro    

about time they got what they deserved and they need to know you can't put other people's lives in danger just to get news or take pictures

728 days ago
27.

MISSA    

About time justice gets served! Paparazzi s*** need to learn they can't put the lives of celebrities and bystanders at risk just to get a picture of the celebs. Now charge JB too with reckless driving too because he didn't need to lead them on on that wild stupid chase.

728 days ago
28.

Phea    

So ridiculous on everyone's part. But c'mon people, if I'm famous and don't want paps following me, the last thing I would do is drive around in LA in a freakin' chrome car. A CHROME CAR!!!! That lil shhhh was asking for it. Deport him back to Canada already.

728 days ago
29.

Joey    

If they would just deport that little girl Justine there wouldn't be any problems

728 days ago
30.

anonymous    

I think not only should the pap be charged, but so should Bieber. He too chose to drive that fast and escalated the situation. ALL ARE GUILTY. i do however think the paps abuse the law greatly by following these people and causing dangerous situations.

728 days ago
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