|Lawyers have issued a statement defending Chris Andersen. (Getty Images)|
On Thursday, reports surfaced indicating Denver Nuggets forward Chris Andersen was the subject of a criminal investigation and that property had been seized after his house had been searched by Internet Crimes Against Children investigators.
Hours later, the Nuggets announced Andersen had been "excused from all team-related activities indefinitely," although he has yet to be arrested or charged with a crime.
While at least one report on Thursday indicated that Andersen was the subject of a child pornography investigation, lawyers for Andersen said on Friday that he was actually the victim of an extortion attempt by a female acquaintance.
The Denver Post first provided the statement from Andersen's lawyers.
"A female fan in 2010 mailed Mr. Andersen multiple letters and included several photos in which she was scantily clad. Chris and this woman communicated with each other and in 2011, this woman, who represented herself as 21 years of age, flew to Colorado, showing her required identification. After leaving Colorado, she became upset at his lack of interest. In 2012, she threatened to retaliate if he did not provide financial remuneration. "The statement, also released to the Associated Press by attorney M. Colin Bresee, indicated Andersen "has been fully cooperative with the authorities" and that his lawyers were "confident" that he "did not engage in any criminal conduct."
Bresee additionally said the investigation was expected to take as much as three weeks.
The Nuggets are set to play Game 7 of their first round playoff series against the Los Angeles Lakers on Saturday night at Staples Center.
Andersen, 33, has not appeared in a game for the Nuggets since March 25. He posted averages of 5.3 points, 4.6 rebounds and 1.4 blocks in 15.2 minutes per game in 32 appearances this season.
Andersen was banned from the NBA from Jan. 2006 to Mar. 2008 for violating the league's substance abuse policy.