Russell Simmons and his girlfriend are refusing to pay the reward for their missing dog as they believe their pet was kidnapped.

The 55-year-old star and model Hana Nitsche are not handing over $5,000 to the Carranza family of Palmdale, California, who found the Chihuahua and organised for it to be returned to its owners.

They insist the pooch was held to ransom by the family who called using a voice disguiser and threatened the brunette beauty before the Bodyguard Group of Beverly Hills rescued the pooch.

Richard Davis, a director at the security group, told New York Post newspaper: ''We [had] been passive because we [didn't] want them to kill the dog ... they told her [Nitsche] has to come alone; no police.''

The family allegedly demanded money should be dropped off to one location and the dog was be retrieved at another.

They maintain their innocence and claim they were simply trying to return the pet to their right owners.

The family explained: ''We were just trying to be good people.''