Nov. 30 (UPI) -- The mayor of Gold Coast, Australia, asked Justin Bieber to sing Christmas carols for the city as punishment for graffiti the pop star painted on the city of a hotel in the city.
Mayor Tom Tate wasn't too happy when he learned the 19-year-old singer was responsible for painting cartoonish characters on the side of the QT Hotel during his stay there last week. Tate went to the hotel, cleaning supplies in hand, demanding Bieber clean up the brightly colored paintings.
But Bieber had already checked owed and left for shows scheduled in Sydney.
Even though he had already left, Tate gave Bieber an ultimatum.
‘‘Just come and clean it up and we’ll be happy with you. Alternatively come and sing at our mayoral Christmas carols on the seventh of December for an hour and I’ll let you go," he said.
Tate said Thursday Bieber is setting a bad example in Gold Coast and that the city spends millions of dollars each year getting rid of graffiti. Tate said if the hotel didn't remove the graffiti, the city would take legal steps.
‘‘More than $2 million is of ratepayers’ hard earned money is spent on this scourge to ensure our vibrant tourism economy is protected. This investment benefits the whole city and in particular hotels and tourism operators such as QT Surfers Paradise,’’ Tate said in a letter.
But the owners of the hotel said they had given Bieber permission to create the paintings, of which he posted photographs on Instagram.
‘‘This piece of art is now available to be viewed by fans of the artist,” the hotel said in a statement, “and we believe that it is a wonderful addition to the colourful Gold Coast arts scene.”
[The New York Times] [Brisbane Times]