Akon Happy To Leave Fans Guessing Over Convict Past
(femalefirst.co.uk) - R& B singer Akon is refusing to confirm or deny reports alleging he lied about his past as a convict, because he is convinced the claims have had a "positive" affect on his career.
The Senegalese star, real name Aliuane Badara Thiam, has claimed throughout his music career that he was the "ringleader of a notorious car theft operation" and served a four-and-a-half year prison sentence before turning his life around.
But last month (Apr08), website thesmokinggun.com published papers that prove he never set foot behind bars. The newly-released documents revealed that although the 35-year-old Locked Up star was arrested in 1998 for possession of a stolen BMW, the case was dropped by a Georgia court.
It also noted that he had been arrested on other occasions, but the stiffest sentence he has faced was three years' probation for gun possession.
However, Akon - who now runs his own record label, Konvict - is unperturbed by the allegations, insisting it was just "an article".
He tells MTV.com, "It's an article. Everyone's entitled to their own opinions and views. At the end of the day, the Konvict movement is keeping me out of jail. "It's nothing I want to glorify or go back to. Honestly, I'm glad something like that came out, because it opens the minds of other people who're thinking positive.
"We're doing so many positive things. To go back and focus and put energy on negative things like that, to try to discredit an artist, it makes no sense to me. If there was a motive for it, it would be worth entertaining. I'd rather keep it the way it is and leave the article out there. It only helps me. It's not something I was trying to glorify or turn back to. It was something I was trying to forget. Actually, it worked out for me in a positive way."