Mavournee Hazel was "devastated" when she heard that Ryan Thomas had been wrongly accused of punching Roxanne Pallett on "Celebrity Big Brother".
The "Neighbours" actress got to know the 34-year-old soap star really well earlier this year when he appeared on the Australian show as Rafael Humphreys, and she has admitted she was "heartbroken" when she learnt that he had been issued a warning by bosses of the reality show for play fighting with Roxanne.
Speaking to Digital Spy, Mavournee said: "When Ryan was here in Australia, he was living here with his girlfriend Lucy [Mecklenburgh]. She was very much a part of the cast as well and they became very friendly and comfortable with us very quickly. We don't get the UK "Big Brother" over here, so I first saw what was happening because Lucy was posting on her [Instagram] Story about it and going on morning shows to defend Ryan.
"We also would have had to be living under a rock not to see all of the articles about it. It was devastating, because we know Ryan. He's one of the most gentle men I've ever met, so it was so heartbreaking.
"I felt so sorry for Lucy and Ryan's family, because they couldn't talk to him and let him know that everyone supported him."
Roxanne - who called for Ryan to be removed from the house after accusing him of being a "woman beater" - later left the famous abode and admitted she had "got it wrong" after the nation backed the former "Coronation Street".
Ryan was later crowned the winner of the show and will no doubt see his career fly to new heights, but Mavournee would like to see him back in Australia.
She explained "I love Ryan as a person.
"I didn't really get a chance to work with him, so I would love for him to come back on the show so I could actually get some scenes with him. But who knows now - he's the "Big Brother" winner, who knows if we could get him back?"