'No Regrets' | 

World Boxing Council chief who pledged support to Daniel Kinahan has 'nothing to hide'

Saldivar clarified that neither he nor WBC had any affiliation with Kinahan during an interview with SNTV this week.

World Boxing Council president Mauricio Sulaiman Saldivar with Daniel Kinahan and promoter Ahmet Öner in Dubai last month

Neasa Cumiskey

World Boxing Council (WBC) president Mauricio Sulaiman Saldivar has said that he has “absolutely nothing to hide” after pledging his “full support” to Daniel Kinahan.

He later said that posing for a photo with the mob boss in Dubai and praising him was an “innocent mistake” that he made due to “absolute ignorance”.

Saldivar clarified that neither he nor WBC had any affiliation with Kinahan during an interview with SNTV this week.

“There’s nothing to hide. Neither the WBC nor myself nor any member of the WBC has had or has any dealings with Daniel Kinahan,” he said.

“I’m president of a world organisation. I meet hundreds of people every time I travel and I’m always open to talk about boxing and anyone who supports or wants to support boxing will have the WBC ears of support.

“So, if you want to call it naïve or a mistake that I made, that could be it but I have absolutely nothing to hide, nothing to regret, and absolutely no worries.

“I have not seen any wrongdoing. I’ve never seen a fight fixed. Unless we get more information or there’s things that are discovered, it has nothing to do with boxing. Zero. Absolutely nothing to do with boxing.”

The Mexican businessman said that American authorities imposing sanctions on Kinahan, his father Christopher Kinahan Snr, and brother Christopher Kinahan Jr is “not a major situation” for the world of boxing.

“We have Canelo Alvarez, we have Manny Pacquiao, Errol Spence, [Terence] Crawford, [Anthony] Joshua, [Oleksandr] Usyk, [Naoya] Inoue in Japan... There are so many great things going on in the whole world.

“I can certainly see that it has a great impact in Ireland and UK geographically and because of the news... but there’s much more to any sport than just one person.”

Last week, the US Department of Treasury’s Office of Foreign Assets Control issued a press release last week in which it detailed sanctions against Kinahan, his father Christopher Snr and brother Christopher Jnr and other members of the “Kinahan Organized Crime Group (KOCG) for their criminal activities.”

Authorities issued a $5 million 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.

Meanwhile, MTK Global, the boxing promotions company founded by Daniel Kinahan in 2012, has ceased operations.

In a statement issued Wednesday afternoon the company said it had taken the difficult decision due to “unprecedented levels of unfair scrutiny and criticism”.

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