Justin Bieber and his mother "lived illegally" in the U.S. at the beginning of his career, according to his manager Scooter Braun.
The Canadian singer was discovered by the music manager on YouTube, and he went to Atlanta, Georgia with his mother Pattie Mallette at the age of 13 to record some demos before being signed to RBMG, a joint venture between Scooter and Usher, part of Scooter's SB Projects company.
In a new interview with Variety, Scooter revealed that Justin and Pattie were living illegally in the U.S. as he described how tough the beginnings of his venture were.
"When I first struck out on my own, I was 24, and I had saved enough money to last me for 13 months," he said. "I had Justin and his mom living illegally - don't tell Donald Trump this - in a townhouse under my name, I was paying all their bills, and I had Asher Roth and his friends living in a dump around the corner that we called the greenhouse because they smoked so much weed."
Scooter thought he would be a failure around the 11-month mark, as he was due to run out of money, but he got lucky with the success of Asher's single I Love College, and then with Justin's phenomenal rise to stardom.
The 37-year-old is still Justin's manager, although they endured what he calls "a rough patch", when the Sorry pop star had multiple run-ins with the law in 2014. He eventually cleaned up his act and went on to release 2015 album Purpose, and Scooter explained to Variety that he had no intention of giving up on him.
"If I'd quit on him then, I'm not who I claim to be. You don't quit on people because they're down. That's when you find out you're actually there for somebody," he continued. "You need to be a stable force in their life so they know where to turn when they need help. Justin was the one who woke up one day and said, 'I'm going to make a change, can you help me?' And I can tell you he made that change himself because for a year and a half I tried every day to make that change and I failed.