Nicki Minaj is being dragged to court over some alleged unpaid bills for custom jewelry ... but her attorney says she's not responsible, and claims the jeweler is just using her for publicity.
The rapper is being sued by a West Hollywood jeweler who claims they loaned out some bling to the rapper -- a pretty standard transaction for celebs, but the jeweler claims some of those pieces came back damaged ... which is not standard.
According to a new lawsuit, obtained by TMZ, Nicki's stylist Brett Alan Nelson signed a contract with Roseark jewelry store, with Roseark agreeing to loan Nicki jewelry for a public appearance.
The store claims the contract called for Brett to return the bling within a week and pay for any damages the jewelry might incur under his watch.
In the docs, Roseark claims Nicki's stylist failed to return 66 pieces of jewelry by the agreed upon deadline, and, when Brett finally forked over the bling, there was noticeable damage to a set of earrings and a leaf ring.
A source close to Nicki tells us ... everything was returned on time as promised and it was only after items were in the jeweler's possession for some time that the store complained about a missing stone.
The jewelry store says it sent invoices to Brett for the damage, which it says totals $26,239.50 plus interest. The folks at Roseark claim they haven't gotten paid, despite their repeated attempts to collect.
So, Roseark is suing Nicki and her stylist for the money ... even though it appears Nikki never had any direct dealings with the jeweler.
In fact, Nicki's attorney, Jordan Siev, tells TMZ ... "We have not been presented with any evidence that any of the jewelry at issue was damaged by Nicki. This lawsuit appears to be nothing more than an ordinary insurance claim by the jeweler designed to generate publicity for itself and extract a payment to which it is not entitled. We will defend the lawsuit vigorously."