Doc McGhee has responded to Jon Bon Jovi’s recent claim that the 1989 Moscow Music Peace Festival was organized as part of a plea deal to keep the manager out of jail.

McGhee – who represented Bon Jovi, Motley Crue, Skid Row and Scorpions throughout the ‘80s – was busted in 1982 for his involvement with drug smugglers bringing tons of marijuana into America. The manager was facing up to 30 years in prison but was able to avoid jail time. In a recent interview with Conan O’Brien, Bon Jovi insisted the concert was part of the deal.

“To keep him out of jail, I had to go to the Soviet Union,” the singer explained. “Somehow his plea bargain was to take the young, cute kid and throw him to the wolves and the judge. And then he says, ‘And I've got an idea: We’ll go to the Soviet Union and promote peace and harmony. And please, your honor, don’t put me in prison.’”

READ MORE: Jon Bon Jovi Recalls Playing in USSR to Keep His Manager out of Jail

During an appearance on The Rock Experience with Mike Brunn, McGhee rejected Bon Jovi’s claims.

“The real truth of the matter is it had nothing to do with it. Period,” the manager declared, noting his legal problems were several years before the concert (he was busted in 1982, but didn't plead guilty until 1988).

McGhee described his conviction as a “conspiracy thing,” before calling into question the validity of Bon Jovi’s story.

“What judge in this world would say, ‘OK, I’ll tell you what I’m gonna do. I’m gonna let you off, you just have to do the first show in the history of the Soviet Union,’” the manager pondered. “Nobody’s going to say that.”

McGhee Claims the USSR Show Was a Charity Endeavor

Refuting Bon Jovi's version of the story, McGhee insisted that the Moscow Peace Music Festival was organized for much more noble purposes -- namely his non-profit Make a Difference foundation, aimed at keeping kids off drugs.

“Before that show, I had Motley Crue, Aerosmith, Bon Jovi, we had everybody in rehab,” McGhee explained. “I was very into keeping people, trying to get them to understand where they fit in life without drugs and alcohol. So this was one of the ways, with the Make a Difference foundation, that I could bring doctors from the west to Russia to teach them how to treat drug and alcohol abuse.”

The artists -- including Bon Jovi, Motley Crue, Ozzy Osbourne, Skid Row and Scorpions -- were not paid for their performances. Meanwhile, McGhee claims he financed the entire undertaking himself.

Though the manager conceded that the Moscow Music Peace festival could be considered a “byproduct” of his legal problems, he insisted it was not part of a plea deal. “It had nothing to do with Doc McGhee other than I wanted to go to Russia.”

Bon Jovi Albums Ranked Worst to Best

A ranking of every Bon Jovi studio album.

Gallery Credit: Anthony Kuzminski

More From 99.1 The Whale