Bieber friend rapper Lil Za charged with drug possession

February 1, 2014

LOS ANGELES (Reuters) - A friend of Justin Bieber's has been charged with drug crimes in connection with a raid on the teen pop star's home this month, the Los Angeles County District Attorney's office said on Friday.

Xavier Smith, 20, better known as rapper Lil Za, was charged with possession of MDMA and oxycodone and vandalizing the Los Angeles County Sheriff's jail where he was held, said Ricardo Santiago, a spokesman for the district attorney.

Smith was arrested on January 14 during a Sheriff's Department raid on Bieber's home in Calabasas, about 30 miles northeast of Los Angeles.

If convicted of the three felony charges, Smith faces a maximum penalty of four years and four months in county jail. He is due to be arraigned in Los Angeles on February 4.

MDMA is better known on the street as ecstasy. Oxycodone is a prescription painkiller best known under the name OxyContin.

Investigators were searching Bieber's home for evidence in a vandalism case in which he is accused of pelting his neighbor's house with eggs when they found a white powder initially thought to be cocaine, the Sheriff's Department said at the time.

Bieber, 19, was arrested last week in Miami Beach on charges of driving under the influence, resisting arrest and driving with an expired license. The Canadian was also charged on Wednesday with assaulting a limousine driver in Toronto.

(Reporting by Eric Kelsey)

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