NRL star Bodene Thompson has expressed his love for the son he fathered with a former Penthouse Pet and stripper, denying her claims that he has not paid appropriate support for their love child.
Belinda Medlyn this week claimed in The Daily Telegraph that she was owed money from Thompson to support their now-15-month-old son Hendrix.
But the Warriors player yesterday released a statement denying he owed Ms Medlyn any money and insisted he loved his son and needed to protect him publicly from the claims.
Thompson said he has met all child support payments and claimed he is the victim of an "extortion attempt'' because Ms Medlyn threatened to expose their love child story unless he paid her $50,000.
Former Penthouse model Belinda Medlyn says she is owed money from Thompson to support their now-15-month-old son Hendrix.
But Ms Medlyn claims she was forced to ask the ex-West Tigers star for money when a financial agreement between them to raise their child broke down.
Yesterday, she asked: "Is is really extortion to ask for help for our son?"
In his statement, Thompson said: "I refused to pay her this money on the basis that I was already paying her child support as assessed by the Child Support Agency.
"These allegations, which occurred many years ago, have been raised so publicly in a failed attempt to extort money from me to the detriment of myself and my child.
"This story has no benefit except to attempt to smear my reputation."
Thompson said he did not want to give any more "oxygen" to the damaging claims, but felt a responsibility to tell his side of the story to protect his young son, saying: "Ms Medlyn approached me in June 2017 threatening that she would expose this story unless I gave her a sum of $50,000.
"I love my son and I have been striving to have a relationship with him. Ms Medlyn has made this difficult, however, I continue to seek avenues to pursue having a proper relationship with my son. I continue to meet all of my financial obligations to my son and work hard to ensure his future."
Thompson's lawyer has sent legal letters to Ms Medlyn.
Update your news preferences and get the latest news delivered to your inbox.