Work in Sports
Official's statement says Don King paid IBF
Posted: Saturday January 29, 2000 12:17 PM
NEWARK, New Jersey (AP) -- Boxing promoter Don King paid thousands of dollars to International Boxing Federation officials to influence the rankings of boxers he represented, according to a sworn statement by a boxing official unsealed by a federal judge.
The statement by Doug Beavers, the IBF's former ratings chairman, was included in hundreds of pages of evidence unsealed Friday by U.S. District Court Judge John W. Bissell.
In another sworn statement, boxing promoter Bob Arum said he paid a $100,000 bribe so that the East Orange-based IBF would sanction a heavyweight title fight between George Foreman and Axel Schulz in 1995. Foreman paid $250,000 to get the fight, Arum said.
The evidence led to the Nov. 4 indictment of IBF President Robert W. Lee Sr. and three others on charges of taking $338,000 in bribes to manipulate the rankings of boxers.
Bissell unsealed the documents Friday at the request of the Los Angeles Times. He had originally sealed the records after the U.S. Attorney's Office fled a civil racketeering lawsuit that sought the ouster of Lee and the appointment of a monitor to run the IBF.
Beavers secretly recorded conversations with Lee and others while he helped the FBI investigate corruption in the industry.
Beavers said King, promoter Cedric Kushner, and several other promoters and managers regularly bribed Lee to move their boxers up in the IBF's monthly rankings, the lists that determine who gets lucrative fights.
"King paid Lee Sr. to benefit King's boxers in the ratings and for other favorable treatment," Beavers said.
Lee often favored King's fighters in the rankings, and would demote boxers whom King no longer promoted, Beavers said.
King has not been charged with a crime. FBI agents searched his Deerfield Beach, Florida, business last year and took away hundreds of boxes of documents.
Bob Goodman, vice president of boxing operations for Don King Productions, told The Record of Hackensack on Friday that he knew nothing about the contents of the documents.
Prosecutors allege that Lee began taking bribes soon after founding the IBF in 1983.