Tag Archives: charges

Original Gangster: Antandil Khurtsidze Arrested In Organized Crime Roundup


Original Gangster: Antandil Khurtsidze Arrested In Organized Crime Roundup
By: Sean Crose

Okay, I admit that title is a bit disingenuous. The truth is that here in the United States of America, one is innocent until proven guilty in a court of law. Therefore, middleweight Antandil Khurtsidze, who was arrested on Wednesday in a roundup of people reputedly connected to what the United States’ Attorney of the Southern District of New York referred to as “a Russian and Georgian Criminal Enterprise,” has done nothing wrong in the eyes of society. Still, the man is now up on charges and his upcoming title bout with Billy Joe Saunders is at least temporarily kaput. That does not constitute a good day.

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Specifically, Khurtsidze, a 33-2-2 product of the nation of Georgia who now lives in Brooklyn, is standing accused of conspiring to commit wire fraud and with breaking the RICO (Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organization) Act. If convicted, the man can face decades in prison, be fined a ton of money and eventually end up under supervised release. The group Khurtsidze is reputedly connected to is known as the Shulaya Enterprise, a Russian/Georgian crime syndicate led by one Razhden Shulaya.

Among the Enterprise’s alleged operations are: illegal poker establishments in Brighton Beach, the extortion of gamblers and business owners, the attempted high tech defrauding of casinos, the theft of 10,000 pounds of chocolate (it’s true), the theft of other cargo shipments, the employment of a female Enterprise member to lure in and rob unsuspecting males (after rendering the victim’s unconscious with gas), the movement of untaxed cigarettes, the intention to open an after hours club (where, among other things, illegal narcotics would be sold), plans to bribe law enforcement, and forgery. With an assortment of charges, such as a “murder for hire conspiracy” and “conspiracy to sell firearms to a felon” lodged against its members, the Shulaya Enterprise appears to be quite a fearsome group – at least on paper.

All of this, of course, leaves middleweight titlist Billy Joe Saunders high and dry. He and Khurtsidze were supposed to fight in England this July. Now that his opponent has far more pressing things to attend to, Saunders will have to wait for another opportunity to fight. This, of course, only adds to the strangeness of Saunders’ title reign, which has consisted of twitter rants, long periods of time outside the ring and a ho-hum performance against Artur Akavov last December.

Still, Saunders’ future looks to be far brighter than Khurtsidze’s is at the moment. Sometimes it’s good to put everything in perspective.

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Anthony Dirrell Speaks Out On Last Saturday Night


Anthony Dirrell Speaks Out On Last Saturday Night
By: Sean Crose

Boxing once again received some negative attention last Saturday night when chaos ensued after the Andre Dirrell-Jose Uzcategui super middleweight bout in Maryland. Dirrell was sent down and out by a punch that landed after the bell. Uzcategui was disqualified, but Dirrell’s uncle and trainer, Leon Lawson Jr, sucker punched Uzcategui twice in the fight’s aftermath. He’s now being sought by Maryland police. There was also an incident, however, involving Dirrell’s sibling, Anthony, for video shows the younger Dirrell brother pushing an individual in the post-fight madness. The man who was pushed is said to have been a Maryland commissioner. Needless to say, word was out that the police were quite interested in Anthony’s actions that night, as well as his uncles’.

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Anthony Dirrell himself, however, claims the police weren’t interested in him at all last weekend. “They wasn’t even looking for me,” Dirrell said over the phone. “They never interviewed me or nothing.” Dirrell even claimed that the police were rather helpful after the madness that transpired at the MGM Grand National Arena. “They escorted me to my brother’s room,” he claimed. Dirrells’ assertions coincide with those of his representative, Kira Kusky, who I had spoken with earlier in the day. “He is not in any jeopardy,” she said when I asked about a police investigation. “No, not at all.”

And so Anthony Dirrell looks clear to meet Callum Smith next September in California for the WBC world super middleweight title. There was word that the championship battle would be put off due to legal matters stemming from last Saturday, but both Dirrell and his representative assured me that wouldn’t be the case. “His next fight is still on,” Kusky said, a fact Dirrell himself reiterated when we spoke a short time later. “I don’t see how (the fight could be off),” he claimed. “Nobodies’ looking for me.” It’s clear, then, that Dirrell and his team feel it is safe to focus on the talented and undefeated Smith without being impeded by legal matters.

As for older brother, Andre – who found himself on the mat after the bell last Saturday – Dirrell claims he’s doing well. “My bother’s fine,” he said. The saga of Leon Lawson Jr, uncle and trainer, has yet to be resolved (he’s still wanted by police, after all), yet it looks like both Dirrell brothers themselves are free to carry on with their respective careers. Before the call ended I asked Anthony if he’d like to, through his perspective, go over the events at the MGM Grand National Arena. “No,” he responded. “I’m not talking about that.”

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Criminal Charges Against Adrien Broner Dropped


Criminal Charges Against Adrien Broner Dropped
By: Sean Crose

Flamboyant and controversial boxer Adrien Broner got himself out of trouble on Tuesday after his alleged victim in a robbery and assault case didn’t show up for court in Ohio. Broner was accused of attacking and robbing a man outside a bowling alley in Cincinnati earlier this year after a night of bowling for considerable money. A gun was allegedly involved in the incident and there was also supposed to be video footage in play. Still, when a star witness is a no show, it’s hard to proceed with a criminal trial. Also worth noting is the fact that the alleged victim/witness dropped a civil case against Broner back in June.

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Now a free man, Broner can return to his career in the ring, if he so chooses. Sure enough, word is out that the man known as The Problem wants to fight again before the year is out. Broner’s last bout, against an outclassed Ashley Theophane, ended up adding another victory to a 32-2 resume that includes title runs at multiple weight classes. Still, Broner is known as much now for his outside the ring antics as he is for his considerable ring ability. Aside from this most recent run in with the law, Broner has an illustrious history of inappropriate behavior.

With that in mind, however, it’s worth noting that Broner is indeed a talented athlete. Aggressive and fast, he was once thought to be on his way to superstardom. Losses to the considerable likes of Marcos Maidana and Shawn Porter, however, have taken more than a bit of the bloom off of Broner’s rose. Yet the man’s personality, combined with his skill set, make him much see TV for many fight fans, something that’s a big plus in this era of acute boxing doldrums. Whether or not the man shows the discipline and ambition to live up to long dormant expectations now that he’s free and clear of some pretty serious charges remains to be seen.

Broner is currently the former – that’s former – WBA superlightweight champion (he didn’t make weight for that Theophane fight), which means he’s still arguably a divisional peer of such notables as Bud Crawford, Viktor Postol, Lucas Matthysse and Lamont Peterson. Even though promotional politics can (What else is new?) prevent most of these fights from happening, the opposition is out there should Broner push to assert himself. As always, time will ultimately tell the tale. Here’s hoping The Problem rises to the occasion.

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