Chris Brown denies controversial tattoo is of Rihanna


Chris Brown

A tattoo of a skull on Chris Brown's neck is not his ex-girlfriend Rihanna, a spokesperson for the singer has said.

There had been outcry online over the design's similarity to pictures of a beaten Rihanna in 2009.

Brown's representative told US site TMZ the design was "not Rihanna or an abused woman as erroneously reported."

He pleaded guilty to assault and was sentenced to five years probation after attacking Rihanna in 2009.

The R&B singer, who was 19 at the time of the attack, also had to complete community service and domestic violence counselling.

A spokesperson for Brown said: "His tattoo is a sugar skull (associated with the Mexican celebration of the Day of the Dead) and a MAC cosmetics design he saw."

The tattoo's design has still been criticised.

UK rapper Clemont Marfo tweeted: "Chris Brown is a certified mongoose! Whether his new tattoo is Rihanna or not.. He is clearly troubled!"

James Smith, singer with rock band Hadouken, also commented on Twitter: "This just made me spit out my cornflakes and its 5pm. Chris Brown gets neck tattoo of BEATEN WOMAN?!?! (sic)"

In The Guardian Kira Cochrane wrote: "There's no doubt the image calls to mind the biggest scandal of his career."

Chris Brown and Rihanna both attended the MTV VMAs on 6 September.

In August Rihanna told chat show host Oprah Winfrey that she still loved Brown despite the attack.