The mistress and woman at the center of the scandal surrounding LA Clippers owner Donald Sterling said on Friday that she does not believe he is a racist.
"No, I don't believe it in my heart," V. Stiviano said in an interview with Barbara Walters on ABC's 20/20, when asked if the owner was racist.
She said that Mr. Sterling feels alone and isolate after being banned for life from the NBA after she released a voice recording of him telling her not to associate with black people, the Los Angeles Times reported.
Ms. Stiviano told Ms. Walters that Mr. Sterling grew up in a different generation and that she did not think his comments came from a place of hatred of bigotry.
"I think he feels very alone, not truly supported by those around him. Tormented, emotionally traumatized," she said adding that she loved Mr. Sterling "like a father" and served as his "protector."
Last month, Mr. Sterling's wife, Rochelle filed a lawsuit against Ms. Stiviano seeking the return of a duplex, Ferrari, two Bentleys and a Range Rover that Mr. Sterling had bought for her.
In the lawsuit, Ms. Stiviano is described as a 31-year-old seductress who targets wealthy older men like the 80-year-old Clippers owner.
Although the LA Times reports that the property records show Ms. Stiviano purchased the duplex in December 2013, Ms. Sterling says that she allowed her husband to purchase the home believing his name would be on the deed as well.
Ms. Sterling also alleges that her husband gave Ms. Stiviano $240,000 for living expenses and $2 million of community property without her knowledge.
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