Justin Bieber is in hot water after a British newspaper posted a video of him using a racial slur.

Photo: Getty Images

In the footage, reportedly shot for his 2011 documentary Justin Bieber: Never Say Never, the singer told a racist joke whose punchline included repeated use of the N-word.

Justin was quick to issue an apology. In a statement, the singer blamed his youth on his inappropriate behavior. "I thought it was OK to repeat hurtful words and jokes," he said, "but didn't realize at the time that it wasn't funny and that in fact my actions were continuing the ignorance." The Bieb says he's learned from his mistakes and has grown up. "I was a kid then and I am a man now who knows my responsibility to the world and to not make that mistake again."

TMZ claims they've had the video for four years, but refused to make it public because Bieber was only 15 at the time and expressed regret afterward.

One of his former bodyguards, Kenny Hamilton, has defended the singer. Hamilton, who is black, went on Twitter to say the Bieb definitely isn't racist.  "I have known him since he was 12 years old and I know his heart," he wrote. Hamilton also said, "We all make jokes about people’s size, look, or race. That doesn’t mean it’s right but comedians make millions of dollars profiting off of these jokes. If someone is racist or prejudice you would know from a persons actions. Not because of a joke a 15-year-old says."

// ]]>