Benny Ibarra spoke to the media after the Mexican singer was supposedly denied U.S. residency for drug use

By People Staff
November 06, 2007 11:00 AM

Benny Ibarra, close friend of Paulina Rubio and former member of her old band Timbiriche, expressed his support for the Mexican singer, who was allegedly denied U.S. residence for drug use.

“I’m nobody, and I wouldn’t dare to judge Paulina, and more than anything, I’m with her like a big brother and support her however I can,” the 37-year-old singer told Televisa Espectáculos.

Last week, a Mexican newspaper reported that on Sept. 13, the 36-year-old songstress and her husband, Nicolás Vallejo-Nágera, went to the U.S. Consulate in Juarez, Mexico, to start the process of establishing residency in the United States. The couple had to undergo a medical exam as part of the process, and tests supposedly revealed that Rubio had consumed marijuana, and that her husband tested positive for ecstasy, cocaine and marijuana.

“I think she’s a woman who’s worked a lot in that country, and I’d really like her to get out of this somehow, but I’m not familiar with what happened, I’ve heard the gossip and rumors, but nothing specific,” Ibarra said.

The musician added that he’s not what consequences the incident will have on his friend’s career, but he warned: “You’ve got to learn to take care of [your image]…Right now, with everything that is Timbiriche, which has a lot to do with kids, and it’s a delicate issue…In the end, Paulina can do what she wants with her life, it’s her responsibility, and if she’s going to behave badly, [I hope] they don’t catch her.”