BRITNEY SPEARS has snagged a new beau – and an ENQUIRER investiga­tion reveals he’s hiding a criminal past!

David Lucado, a 27-year-old “field re­searcher” at an L.A. law firm, was busted for smuggling booze onto his high school campus.

ACCORDING TO DOCUMENTS obtained by The ENQUIRER, then-18-year-old Lucado was arrested for “possession of alcohol on school property” on Oct. 17, 2003, during his senior year at Liberty High School in Bedford, Va.

After pleading guilty, Lucado was sen­tenced to 50 hours of community service, placed on 12 months’ probation, and fined $74 plus processing fees.

He and Britney were first spotted together having dinner on Valentine’s Day at a Los Angeles sushi restaurant. Two days later, they were photographed golfing at the private Sherwood Country Club in Thou­sand Oaks, Calif., where Britney lives.

As The ENQUIRER reported, they were still just friends at that point, but a source says things heated up quickly after that.

Lucado reportedly owes $28,000 to the IRS in back taxes, but it hasn’t put a damper on his love life.

“David only recently relocated from Georgia to L.A., and he feels like he’s hit the jackpot with Britney,” said another insider.

“But she better watch out! He’s a smooth talker, and the ladies love him.”