The latest allegations come from Episode 3 of Dan Taberski's new podcast titled Missing Richard Simmons which seeks to uncover the truth behind Simmons' disappearance form the public eye.
In the episode, Taberski speaks with Simmons' longtime friend and former masseuse Mauro Oliveira who shares his claims that the workout mogul is being held hostage by his housekeeper Teresa Reveles.
"It was 6 p.m., and I went into his house. He was sitting in the living room, and he was very weakly, physically and mentally. He was trembling. He said, 'Mauro. I called you here because we cannot see each other anymore. I'm just going to stay here,'" Oliveira recalled of the last time he saw Simmons in May of 2014. "I thought of the worst. I thought the worst was going to happen. I thought he was suicidal."
Oliveira also claimed that he was unable to speak with Simmons privately before Reveles intervened. "She realized that I was in the house, she started screaming like a witch, 'No, no, no, no, get out, get out! I don't want him here!' Richard looked at me and said, 'You got to go.' I said, 'Really? Is she controlling your life now?' and he said, 'Yes.' And that I have to leave."
In a statement, Estey denied the allegations and assured fans that Simmons is doing well despite his public absence.
"Teresa has been working with him for 27 years. So, holding him hostage is the biggest, I mean...Teresa is the housekeeper, she's the caretaker, she is extraordinary, she is amazing, she takes impeccable care of Richard and she has for as long as I have been working with Richard. So that is a complete load of crap," he said.
Estey also pointed out how Simmons' decision to lead a life away from the spotlight was one he made on his own.
"People claim that it happened overnight. It really didn't. We were turning down stuff for years and just kind of quieting down, and when he decides that he wants to come back, that's when he'll come back, and when that will be, I have no idea or if he will at all. There really isn't anything to report," he continued.
"We did not cooperate nor participate in this podcast because we didn't feel the need to nor did we want to. All these things distract from his legacy and I will not allow that to happen because this man is a world treasure. He has helped millions of people lose millions of pounds. He has saved millions of lives, spent millions and millions of his own money helping and saving people's lives. This man is a saint, so treat him like a saint and leave him alone," Estey said.
Simmons was last seen in public in February of 2014. In a statement on Facebook, Simmons assured fans he was doing okay.
"I am finally taking my own advice. I am being kind to myself and putting myself first," the 68-year-old said on Facebook at the time. "I am making changes and taking time to do the things I want to do. Please know that I am in good health and I am happy. No one has ever been able to tell me what to do and the same is true today."