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11 November 2017, 16:57
Star Trek actor George Takei has denied a former model's claim that he was groped by the celebrity more than 35 years ago.
Takei, now 80, said on Twitter that the alleged events described by Scott R Brunton in an interview with The Hollywood Reporter "simply did not occur".
The US star added: "I do not know why he has claimed them now," and said he was "shocked and bewildered" by the allegations which he found "personally painful".
Brunton told the US publication that the alleged incident took place in 1981 when he was 23 and Takei was in his early 40s.
Brunton claimed he "passed out" at the actor's home after a few drinks and woke to find Takei touching him inappropriately.
In a series of Twitter posts, Takei, who played Sulu in the hit sci-fi TV show in the 1960s and a number of Star Trek movies, wrote: "Friends, I'm writing to respond to the accusations made by Scott R Brunton.
"I want to assure you all that I am as shocked and bewildered at these claims as you must feel reading them."
He continued: "The events he describes back in the 1980s simply did not occur, and I do not know why he has claimed them now. I have wracked my brain to ask if I remember Mr Brunton, and I cannot say I do.
"But I do take these claims very seriously, and I wanted to provide my response thoughtfully and not out of the moment.
"Right now it is a he said/he said situation, over alleged events nearly 40 years ago.
"But those that know me understand that non-consensual acts are so antithetical to my values and my practices, the very idea that someone would accuse me of this is quite personally painful."
Takei added: "Brad, who is 100% beside me on this, as my life partner of more than 30 years and now my husband, stands fully by my side. I cannot tell you how vital it has been to have his unwavering support and love in these difficult times."
He ended by saying: "Thanks to many of you for all the kind words and trust. It means so much to us. Yours in gratitude, George."
(c) Sky News 2017: Star Trek actor George Takei denies groping model