EXCLUSIVE: Kanye West paid $250,000 to a family member who threatened to release a S.E.X TAPE of the rapper with a ‘fair-skinned black woman’ discovered on his laptop

The incident led the rapper to cut himself off and become distrustful of those in his inner circle – which ultimately led to his breakdown, according to his cousin Lawrence Franklin.

Speaking just days after Kanye, 39, was taken to a Los Angeles hospital for psychiatric issues, Franklin told how Kanye was forced to cough up $250,000 after a family member discovered a video of the hip hop artist having sex with an unknown woman on a laptop the rapper had given away as a gift.

Franklin, 31, also revealed how Kanye, still grieving for his beloved mother Donda, struggles to live in the Kardashians’ world as it is so different from his proud African American upbringing.

Franklin says that the rapper cut himself off from the family after the incident and became distrustful of people in his inner circle

Kanye was so upset by the incident he began to retreat from his family and became 'disconnected', Franklin said

He believes Donda, who died in 2007 from complications following elected plastic surgery, would not approve of Kanye’s wife Kim Kardashian and says that had she still been alive Kanye would not have had to be admitted to the hospital for his breakdown.

‘The sex tape episode started his decline – he stopped trusting people,’ Franklin explained.

‘At the end of the day if a member of your family had taken you for a quarter of a million dollars – so they can complete their own ambitions – who can you trust within your circle?

‘This was also around the time when his mother has just died and he takes a lot of responsibility for that.

‘When you go from being a regular person to being a huge star – and having all of these mounting issues and being completely void of the normalcy that you once had – it’s tough.

‘Where do you go? Who do you trust at the end of the day?’

Franklin, an entrepreneur and producer, says the sex tape was discovered in late 2012 – the same year Kanye had started dating his now-wife.

Kanye had gifted a family member a laptop – and the family member in turn had lent the laptop to another family member.

Franklin, who is based out of Los Angeles, said: ‘I was at my aunt’s house when the family member who had the laptop called me, a friend of his, and my uncle to the kitchen where he opened the laptop to show a video of Kanye in clear view having sex with a fair-skinned black woman.

Franklin claims that the Kardashian faimly does 'not represent our family values' and that Kanye's mother, Donda, would not approve of Kanye marrying into the family

‘The family member knew what he had was gold, and later called an old friend of his that was an attorney.

‘He put together a small team him and his attorney went after Kanye, and to show that they meant business they leaked a little information publicly to let it be know they indeed had the footage.

‘The family member tried to keep a low profile but it was not long before Kanye’s team learned who it was that had the sex tape.’

The person received numerous offers for the tape – including from a porn website, Franklin claims.

Desperate to stop the tape from being leaked, Kanye enlisted a team of friends and attorneys who did everything they could to get the laptop back.

‘Kanye was adamant that the tape would never get released,’ Franklin said.

‘I’m not entirely sure why but one can only assume that because the woman in the video was not Amber Rose or Kim, or any woman he was linked with – that could have been the reason.

‘Eventually the family member agreed to give Kanye the laptop for a large amount of money – more than $250,000, and ensure there were no other copies.

‘He was was also required to take a lie detector test regarding the laptop.

‘The family member got this money and started to buy himself a lifestyle he dreamed about.

‘This did make Kanye upset, but it was all kept quiet. It caused a huge rift in our family.’

Kanye was so upset by the incident he began to retreat from his family and became ‘disconnected’.

The song Real Friends, released earlier this year, is about the incident, according to Franklin.

The lyrics for the song are:

‘I had a cousin that stole my laptop that I was f*ckin’ bitches on. Paid that n***a 250 thousand just to get it from him. Real friends…Huh?’

It was around this time that Kanye’s erratic behavior – including bizarre Twitter spats and on-stage rants – started.

Franklin believes this is because his cousin had no one to turn to:

He couldn’t trust his close family and friends, and his new life with the Kardashian family was so far from reality for the star.

Franklin said: ‘I feel that kind of behavior happens when you have no one to turn to, you can’t trust your friends and you have no one to talk to.

‘For the most part I don’t look at the Kardashians as real people.

‘Kanye comes from a very family-orientated environment with roots and African American family lifestyle – you know family reunions with food and things like that.

‘The Kardashians are the complete opposite of what’s familiar in our community.

‘So it’s kind of weird for him and I can understand there’s no way for him to release that.

‘However when family begins to do you wrong where do you retreat?’

Another issue Franklin believes may have affected Kanye is that his mother Donda would not have approved of his wife Kim.

The pair got together in early 2012, five years after Donda’s shock death, and have since had two children together three-year-old North and one-year-old Saint.

‘The Kardashians do not represent our family values,’ Franklin said. ‘Kim Kardashian made her way to fame through another sex tape and by showing her body – that’s who she is.

‘When it comes down to substance, from the outside looking in – it doesn’t reflect what’s reality to us.

‘Those are industry people, they live their lives for the camera.

‘Everything they do is for the camera. They are always showing their bodies to get attention from the camera and at the end of the day that isn’t real.

‘If everything was gone who are you in the mirror?

‘I’m not personally sure how Aunt Donda would have received the Kardashians other than a good business move.

‘If there was no fame, no fortune and no celebrity status and there was a woman who represented the things that Kim represents, knowing what Aunt Donda represented, she would not have approved.

‘She represented class, dignity and respect, woman power and black power and she loved God.

‘So outside of the industry, Aunt Donda would not have approved of Kim Kardashian – that’s the truth.’

Franklin believes that Kanye’s grief for his mother – who he enjoyed a close relationship with – has also contributed to his breakdown.

Donda, a former college professor who raised only child Kanye as a single mother, moved to Los Angeles from Chicago with her son to help him with his burgeoning career.

She handled many of his affairs and often acted as a ‘momager’.

Her death in 2007 from complications arising from liposuction and breast augmentation surgery left a huge hole in Kanye’s life – and one he blames himself for.

‘Aunt Donda was the most loving person you have ever met in your life – she was a college professor, an educator, a very smart woman,’ Franklin said.

‘She was very beautiful and very family oriented always. She always participated in family functions.

‘She embraced her black womanhood – she embraced every essence of that from her hair to the way she dressed.

‘She was also an active participant in the civil rights sit-in in Oklahoma.

‘All of that transferred over to Kanye and as an only child they were naturally very close. He was a mama’s boy, which is represented in his early music.

‘Kanye was the apple of her eye. She was a huge supporter of his career and kept all of his pictures, his artwork, his awards.

‘I remember when he first got his house on Fairfax, he had a big party and I remember she was there and she started yelling his name three times because she was so proud of him and where he had come.

‘We were all shocked by her death – it was something no one expected. She was so vibrant and full of life and love, then she was gone. It took its toll on everyone but Kanye the most.

‘Kanye believed that had it not been for his fame and fortune in the entertainment industry, Aunt Donda would never have been consumed by Hollywood and tried to fit into that lifestyle and she would never have got that surgery.

‘If you look at pictures you can see that she used to be very much about her naturalness. So he blames himself for that and how do you get over that?’

Franklin said Donda supported her son through thick and thin – and would be by his side now offering words of encouragement if she were still alive.

Even more poignantly, Franklin believes that Kanye would never have ended up in the hospital if his mother had not passed away when she did.

‘When Kanye was in the hospital after his car accident in 2002 Aunt Donda was there at the hospital in a matter of moments

‘First flight out there, she made sure she was right by his side and at his every beck and call.

‘If she was here today she would do nothing but love on him and encourage him and uplift him and be by his side.

‘But to be honest if she was here today he probably wouldn’t be going through all this because she was his rock. That’s the truth.’


Kanye recently posed with Donald TrumpCredit: Getty Images

Meanwhile, Kanye – who was taken to hospital in early December after suffering a psychotic break – met with President Elect Donald Trump earlier this week at New York’s Trump Tower.

Writing on Twitter for the first time in weeks shortly afterwards, Kanye defended his choice to meet with the controversial world leader – before hinting once again that he would consider running for the job himself in 2024.

The hip-hop star tweeted: “I wanted to meet with Trump today to discuss multicultural issues…

“These issues included bullying, supporting teachers, modernizing curriculums, and violence in Chicago…

“I feel it is important to have a direct line of communication with our future President if we truly want change…”

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