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Daniel Kinahan's former MTK partner Matthew Macklin stopped from boarding flight to US

Macklin (39) who co-founded the boxing firm MTK Global with Kinahan in 2012, last week insisted that he will 'fully comply' with US sanctions

Daniel Kinahan (right) with best pal, boxer Matthew Macklin

Neil Fetherstonhaugh and Neasa Cumiskey

Sky Sports pundit and former friend of Daniel Kinahan, Matthew Macklin, has been stopped from travelling to the United States because of his links to the crime boss.

The former world title contender was on his way to Las Vegas this week to cover Saturday's super-featherweight unification fight between Shakur Stevenson and Oscar Valdez.

However, he was not allowed to board his flight at a London airport amid scrutiny from US authorities into those with past or present links to Kinahan.

Sky Sports declined to comment on Macklin being refused entry to the US, but told Sportsmail in a statement: "Matthew Macklin relinquished his interest in MTK in 2017, and has had no commercial dealings with Daniel Kinahan since.

"Matthew Macklin is not a named individual in the US sanctions, nor does he have any interest in, or prior dealings with, the named companies (in the detailed US sanctions). However, he will of course be fully compliant with any responsibilities which may arise from the sanctions."

Boxer Macklin (39) who co-founded the boxing firm MTK Global - originally named Macklin's Gym Marbella (MGM) - with Kinahan in 2012 and regularly posed in photos with the crime boss.

The pair had a close relationship for years before Macklin “disposed” of his stake in the company in 2017.

Macklin, who has no involvement in crime, now works as a regular commentator and pundit for Sky Sports and has only recently distanced himself from Kinahan.

However, last week he insisted that he will "fully comply” with US sanctions imposed on the crime boss.

Back in 2017, Macklin announced that Kinahan had taken a backseat in his role at MTK due to “bad publicity.”

“Me and Daniel started off MGM. We were best friends and like I said I was over there all the time when I was training... so we set that up and it just grew from there," he said.

“Obviously then there's been a lot of bad publicity... Daniel has taken a backwards step.

"He still advises lots of fighters."

Last week, MTK Global announced that it had ceased operations entirely due to “unprecedented levels of unfair scrutiny and criticism” following the sanctioning of Kinahan, his father Christopher Kinahan Snr, and his brother Christopher Kinahan Jr by US authorities earlier this month.

The US Department of Treasury’s Office of Foreign Assets Control issued a $5million bounty for information leading to the arrest or conviction of the three most senior members of the cartel group for smuggling narcotics to Europe, laundering money, and committing murders as part of its criminal enterprise.

A statement from MTK read: “As a business we have faced unprecedented levels of unfair scrutiny and criticism since the sanctioning by the US government of Daniel Joseph Kinahan."

Daniel Kinahan (right) is pictured with Liam Brannigan, who was jailed for conspiracy to murder

“It is a matter of public record that Mr Kinahan’s involvement in MTK ceased in 2017, and despite repeated reassurances in this regard, unfounded allegations about his ongoing association with us and our fighters persist.

“Since leading promoters have now informed us that they will be severing all ties to MTK and will no longer work with our fighters, we've taken the difficult decision to cease operations at the end of this month.

“MTK prospered because we always put the long term interests of our fighters at the heart of what we do.”

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