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Former Def Jam head Lyor Cohen isn’t keeping his lips sealed. The music industry heavyweight has shared some words on longtime pal Russell Simmons‘ publicized sexual assault allegations.

During a South By Southwest event this week, Cohen stood up for Simmons based on their past relationship but admitted he could not condone sexual assault done by anyone.

“I want to acknowledge the awful allegations that have been made about Russell,” he said, at the first mention of Simmons’ name. “We were roommates and we’ve stayed friends and partners ever since. I never saw him aggressive or violent with any women. It’s not the RusselI I know. I’m deeply troubled with all the allegations, and there’s absolutely no room for this type of behavior.” (Variety)

Last month, Cohen and Simmons’ former protégé Foxy Brown penned an open letter in support of Russell.

Simmons had almost immediately low-key responded to Foxy’s post.

A few days prior, Russell announced his current state of mind amid multiple sexual assault accusations.