Northern Ireland news

Court hears Carl Frampton allegedly kept in the dark about $850,000 received for his final fight with Barry McGuigan as manager

Former world champion and boxing promoter Barry McGuigan arrives at Belfast High Court. Picture by Stephen Davison/Pacemaker Press.

CARL Frampton was allegedly kept in the dark about $850,000 received for his final fight under ex-manager Barry McGuigan's guidance, the High Court heard yesterday.

Counsel for the former world champion also accused Cyclone Promotions of a betrayal of trust and setting up a "parallel structure" of bank accounts as part of attempts to conceal profits from the boxer.

But one of Mr McGuigan's sons categorically denied all claims of hiding or deliberately delaying any payments to Mr Frampton.

Blain McGuigan insisted: "He knew me as his promoter, we were friends throughout, had a very good relationship and discussed pretty much every detail of every show."

His father and Mr Frampton are at the centre of a high-profile multi-million pound legal battle.

The Belfast boxer has taken his one-term mentor and the McGuigan family's Cyclone Promotions to court for alleged withheld earnings.

Mr Frampton is being counter-sued for breach of contract by ending their partnership in 2017.

On day 19 of the case musician turned promoter Blain McGuigan was challenged about how the fighter was paid for his two world title fights against Leo Santa Cruz.

In July 2016 Mr Frampton defeated the Mexican in New York to become WBA featherweight champion.

The court heard he was still waiting for payment for that contest by the following January when he lost the rematch in Las Vegas.

Mr Frampton's wife Christine and trainer Shane McGuigan were also said to have rowed in the aftermath of the defeat.

The boxer's newly appointed Belfast accountant then contacted Cyclone to relay his concern and annoyance at the money situation.

Stressing the plan was always to pay Mr Frampton as soon as they returned from the United States, Mr McGuigan said he was shocked at the alleged threat of legal action in the accountant's intervention.

"It was more to do with (his) approach in the immediate aftermath of Vegas, where obviously his client had lost," he told the court.

Mr Frampton subsequently received a net $653,000 payment for the second Santa Cruz bout, but claims he should have got more.

His barrister, Gavin Millar QC, contended that by the time the relationship with the McGuigans broke up he knew nothing about $850,000 that went to Cyclone for the contest.

But insisting Mr Frampton was kept fully informed, Mr McGuigan replied: "Not true. We were still working on the overall income of the event."

As cross-examination drew to a close, his disputed contentions that alleged breaches of duty entitled the boxer to terminate the International Promotional Agreement (IPA) with Cyclone.

The barrister then alleged: "You betrayed his trust in you, you failed to conduct the financial arrangements surrounding the fights that you say you promoted for him in a transparent and open manner.

"You concealed facts from him regarding the true amount of income for the fights under the IPA.

"You concealed a parallel structure that you had set up of Cyclone Promotions Ltd companies and bank accounts into which promotional monies were received from 2014 onwards."

In reply Mr McGuigan maintained: "No, everything was discussed with Carl, he was completely informed and he never made any complaint throughout his whole time with us."

The hearing resumes on Monday.

Enjoy reading the Irish News?

Subscribe now to get full access

Northern Ireland news