Rapper Akon has thrown his support behind Nelly after the Hot in Herre star was arrested on Saturday morning (07Oct17) following a rape accusation.
The hitmaker insisted he is "completely innocent" of sexual assault allegations hours after he was taken into custody and booked on charges of second degree rape in Washington, confessing he is "beyond shocked" to have to face accusations he molested an unnamed women on his tour bus.
And now pal Akon has spoken out to defend Nelly, insisting he is confident the rapper has done nothing wrong.
"I'm 100 per cent positive he's innocent," he tells TMZ. "I don't see Nelly forcing no one (to have sex with him). It just doesn't make sense."
Akon went on to admit these are dangerous times for rappers like himself and Nelly, because women are throwing themselves at the stars for cash gain.
"Half the time they set up a charge just for us to settle up, just so we don't have to deal with the embarrassment or go through the process of hiding it, because once you got that stigma, it's on you, whether you're innocent or guilty."
But Akon fears his friend's accuser may have been sexually assaulted by a member of his entourage or one of their friends.
He adds, "I don't think it was him (Nelly) directly... A lot of times it's always a member of an entourage or someone that comes on (the tour bus) as a friend of an entourage..."
In his tweeted statement, released on Saturday, Nelly wrote: "I am completely innocent. I am confident that once the facts are looked at, it will be very clear that I am the victim of a false allegation."
He also apologised to his family and friends for "the embarrassment and for putting myself in a situation where I could be victimized by this false and defaming allegation...", and added, "To be absolutely clear. I have not been charged with a crime therefore no bail was required. I was released (from custody), pending further investigation."
Nelly's lawyer, Scott Rosenblum, tells TMZ, "It does not surprise me that she (accuser) wanted to have her story publicised. That is playbook 101 of a person with an agenda and clearly she has one. The agenda is money, fame and notoriety... We will be able to show by objective evidence and unbiased witnesses that she has zero credibility.
"She's a person who is making a dangerous, fraudulent allegation to accomplish her own goals."