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Lou Pearlman Battles Boys'Touching Tales

Jan. 30 2008, Published 8:06 a.m. ET

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Accused of defrauding investors of as much as $500 million, boy-band impressario Lou Pearlman has spent the last four months quietly locked up in a Florida pen awaiting trial on federal charges. But he's not about to take the latest nasty allegations against him lying down. At issue is an explosive article in the November issue of Vanity Fair that claims the rotund producer who discovered such pop princes as *NSYNC, Backstreet Boys, and O-Town had inappropriate relationships with many of the young men and boys he made famous.

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Among other charges, writer Bryan Burrough alleges that Pearlman frequently groped his young band members, showed them porn, and, in one graphically described instance, suggests an aspiring young singer perform a sexual act on him in exchange for a spot in a band.

Since his incarceration, on the advice of his attorneys, the usually voluble businessman has kept remarkably tight-lipped, declining to speak to any media outlet besides, which snagged a brief jailhouse interview with him in October. But in light of the "slander" generated by Vanity Fair, Pearlman says he can no longer keep quiet. "A great deal of that story needs to be corrected," he says, claiming that many of the magazine's sources had their own axes to grind, and he complains that he never had a chance to respond to any of the story's charges. "This article is clearly biased and one-sided without substantial evidence."

Breaking News reached out to the pop Svengali through a close friend of his this week, offering him a chance to correct the record. Asked whether anything sexual or inappropriate ever went on with his artists, Pearlman tells, "We are all good friends and had a normal friendship with no inappropriate activity." Asked whether he's gay, Pearlman says straight up, no. "I don't think there is anything wrong with having one's own sexual preference, but no, I've never dated nor have I been interested in men sexually."

After the jump, we present Pearlman's point-by-point response to the story that is burning up the blogs ...



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