Pop heart-throb Nick Carter has denied reports he is to blame for the mysterious bruising on his ex-girlfriend Paris Hilton and claims she may have been injured during a S+M photoshoot.

The Backstreet Boy and the pretty socialite announced their seven month romance had ended on 22 July (04), with Hilton deciding to concentrate on her career and Carter saying "Our relationship was based on distrust. She didn't trust me. I didn't trust her".

On Wednesday (28JUL04) the SIMPLE LIFE reality star shocked revellers at Hollywood's Concord Club when she arrived with a swollen lip and bruised arms.

On Saturday (31JUL04) American newspaper NEW YORK POST claimed the split couple reunited on Monday (26JUL04) to party at the Argyle Hotel and Joseph's nightclub in Los Angeles.

A friend of Hilton told the Post, "Nick wanted to leave, Paris didn't. Nick forced Paris to leave, he made her get in a cab with him."

According to the pal, Hilton has been telling her friends Carter later lost his temper and she is now "scared to death".

The friend alleges, "He has major anger-management issues. We have seen bruises on her before and asked her about them. She has always denied it - until now."

Carter's lawyer MARTY SINGER has fiercely denied the pop singer is to blame for Hilton's bruises and claims the hotel heiress is spreading rumours because she is angry he told PEOPLE magazine he had her name tattooed on his wrist.

Singer says, "Even though they broke up, they spent Monday night together, and Paris left Nick's house Tuesday morning happy.

"This is all because Paris was upset by what Nick told People magazine."

Singer claims Hilton was scheduled to pose for celebrity photographer DAVID LaCHAPELLE on Tuesday, explaining, "It was going to be an S+M shoot."

Singer adds, "This is reciprocity. On Tuesday, he drove her to a business meeting and she called him later that night to see if he wanted to go out with her to some event. He said 'no'. They had a big argument Thursday after People hit the newsstands because she was upset because he (had told the magazine) about her name tattooed on him. In our opinion, it's clearly retaliation."

A family friend of Paris' parents RICK and Kathy Hilton told the NEW YORK DAILY NEWS, "They're weighing whether to press charges. They know that a trial could bring up a lot of subjects they'd rather avoid."

Hilton's rep, TRACY SHAFFER, declined comment on the Carter allegations, but said about the bruising, "We're getting all our ducks in a row now for her and we don't want to say anything to the press now."

02/08/2004 02:46