Recently retired NBA great Shaquille O'Neal has found himself in the middle of a scandal involving a possible sex tape and a very real gang beating of a former business partner.
TMZ.com reports that seven gang members -- one of whom is said to be a friend of O'Neal's -- are under arrest for allegedly kidnapping and beating a man who claimed to have a tape of Shaq having sex with women while he was still married to his now ex-wife.
Law enforcement sources told the gossip website that on February 11, 2008, O'Neal friend Ladell Rowles and six other members of the Main Street Mafia Crip Gang met up with a man named Robert Ross outside of a convenience store in Los Angeles.
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They surrounded his Rolls Royce, pulled guns, and ordered him to drive to Rowles's house. Once there, they allegedly pistol-whipped him and demanded that Ross give them the sex tape. Ross said he would get it and bring it back. They released him -- but not before taking his jewelry, including a Rolex watch, and $15,000 in cash, police say.
Instead, Ross went to police, who arrested the men on robbery, kidnapping and other crimes.
TMZ reports police interviewed O'Neal to determine what, if any, involvement he had in the incident. Shaq was not listed as a suspect when the case file was sent to prosecutors.
TMZ writes about the history between O'Neal and Ross:
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Shaq and his business manager, Mark Stevens, have a record label and allegedly told Ross they would give him a 50% cut in any artists he brought to them. Ross claims he delivered Ray J to Shaq but got cut out of the deal.
Ross told cops after his falling out, he threatened Shaq by telling him about the sex tape, threatening to release it unless Shaq paid up.
Ross claims a "security camera" caught Shaq with several women at Ross's house, where he claims O'Neal brought women to sleep with them while he was still married. But Ross told police the security camera "recycles periodically and the video no longer exists."
Ross also claims he had an affair with O'Neal's wife after the couple separated.