Liza Minnelli's once estranged sister Lorna Luft has come to the star's support after she was portrayed as a man-beater in a TV interview with her bitter husband.

David Gest agreed to be interviewed on news show DATELINE to talk about the abuse he faced at the hands of his estranged wife, which has prompted him to file a $10 million (GBP5.6 million) lawsuit against her.

The CABARET singer has refused to talk about the TV chat, which aired on Friday night (06FEB04), but her sister admits she was appalled by what she saw.

Angry Luft blasts, "He has stepped over the line. It's all about money."

Luft, who was formerly estranged from her sister for many years, insists there's no way the 1.64-metre (five-foot four-inch) singer could have physically abused Gest.

Speaking exclusively to American news show EXTRA! yesterday (09FEB04), Luft adds, "He has no credibility at all. My sister's smaller and, on top of which, if anybody hits you, would you get out of the way? Wouldn't you run out the door?"

In the Dateline interview, Gest claimed he has had 80 Botox injections to the head to "deaden the pain" from repeated beatings dished out by Minnelli.

But Luft fumes, "He has 'INA Disorder' - I Need Attention. Still, what a way to end your 15 minutes!"

10/02/2004 09:15