Russell Simmons has fled the US following a series of rape and sexual harassment allegations against him, and is hiding out at a yoga retreat in Bali, “Page Six TV” has exclusively revealed.
The music mogul, who has been accused by more than eight women of misconduct and is being investigated by the NYPD over two claims, is taking an extended stay at the Yoga Barn in Ubud, in the lush uplands of Bali.
The center’s website describes it as “a gem in a sacred paradise.” It offers yoga, meditation, cleanses and detox, healing and ayurvedic therapy, reiki, spiritual guidance, and even colonics.
A source told us of the Def Jam founder, who discovered yoga in 1994 and has practiced it every day since, “Russell is focusing on yoga and meditation, as well as his spiritual and emotional health.
“He has also been seen wearing robes and walking the streets and markets of Ubud, the yoga town in the jungle.”
The source added that Simmons, 60, is “going to write a book,” apparently about spirituality, healing and yoga — but not a word about his sex scandal.
Simmons has strongly denied any sexual misconduct. He said in a statement in December, “I vehemently deny all these allegations. These horrific accusations have shocked me to my core and all of my relations have been consensual.
“I have already apologized for the instances of thoughtlessness in my consensual relations. I have separated myself from my businesses and charities in order to not become a distraction. I have re-dedicated myself to spiritual learning, healing and working on behalf of the communities to which I have devoted my life … What I will not accept is responsibility for what I have not done. I have conducted my life with a message of peace and love.
“Although I have been candid about how I have lived in books and interviews detailing my flaws, I will relentlessly fight against any untruthful character assassination that paints me as a man of violence.”
Ironically, the Yoga Barn — a very well-known yoga retreat which attracts yogis from all over the world — has instilled a very strict anti-sexual harassment policy. The website reads, “We do not tolerate sexual abuse, sexual harassment, psychological manipulation, or the deliberate misuse of power. Those who stand behind this pledge offer their support to any victims of abuse.
“Sexual harassment must be openly discussed and integrated into spiritual communities in conscious, thoughtful ways intended to educate and empower individuals and groups … We can only move forward when issues of sexual harassment and abuse are allowed to be heard … When victims of abuse and mistreatment speak up, they need to know that they will be heard and action will be taken.”
Reps for Simmons didn’t comment.
SOURCE: Emily Smith
New York Post