Former Star Trek actor George Takei has denied a historical allegation of sexual misconduct.
The US star posted a lengthy statement on Twitter, in which he said that an account given by model Scott R Brunton to The Hollywood Reporter “simply did not occur”.
Bruton told the US publication that the alleged incident took place in 1981 when he was 23 and Takei, now 80, was in his early 40s.
He claimed that he “passed out” at the actor’s home after a few drinks and woke to find Takei touching him inappropriately.
In a string of Twitter posts, Takei wrote: “Friends, I’m writing to respond to the accusations made by Scott R Bruton. I want to assure you all that I am as shocked and bewildered at these claims as you must feel reading them.
“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.
“Brad, who is 100 percent 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 signed off: “Thanks to many of you for all the kind words and trust. It means so much to us. Yours in gratitude, George.”
Takei famously played Sulu in the hit sci-fi franchise in the 1966 television shows – and reprised the role for a number of its big screen titles and series until 2007.