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Irish authorities concerned by involvement of organized crime figure in Fury-Joshua fight

The announcement of potential heavyweight bout between Anthony Joshua and Tyson Fury has raised brows of many after the disclosure of the fact that Irishman Daniel Kinahan is facilitating to seal the deal. Last week Fury through a social media post thanked Kinahan for “getting this deal over the line” to have a potential face off with fellow Englishman in 2021. However, Ireland’s PM, Leo Varadkar addressing the Irish Parliament on Thursday said he was “taken aback” to see Fury riding on Kinahan’s shoulder and making a mention of him in a video “as if this was somebody who did not have quite a chequered history in this State and elsewhere.”

Both Fury and Joshua’s promoters were not available for a response over Kinahan’s involvement in brokering the bout upon contact. The Irish Hight Court in 2018 passed a judgement against the Byrne Organized Crime Group which it ruled was part of a greater international Kinahan Organized Crime Group.

The court observed that the Group was involved in the “importation and distribution of controlled drugs and firearms into Ireland, the UK and mainland Europe” and that operations of “drug trafficking are managed and controlled” by Daniel Kinahan. The law firm representing the kingpin also upon request didn’t comment on the current whereabouts of Kinahan though it is widely believed he is living in UAE.

On Thursday, Taoiseach Varadkar told the Irish Parliament, “While I can’t comment on any particular Garda Irish Police operation, I can certainly assure you that there has been contact between the Department of Foreign Affairs and the authorities in the United Arab Emirates about the matter.”

The National Media Council in Abu Dhabi and Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation also didn’t record their comment on the statement. Varadkar was answering a question put by Alan Kelly, leader of Labour Party, who called for the intervention of Irish state because they “owe it to the victims of such a cartel.”

Kelly said the Irish Parliament: “There is an individual from our country, who according to the High Court, is a very senior figure in organized crime on a global scale and according to CAB: Criminal Assets Bureau) has controlled and managed operations of the Kinahan organized crime group for some time. He has now rebranded himself in the Middle East as a boxing promoter and one of the most famous individuals involved in that has described him as a smart, able and honest man.”

Irish politician Neale Richmond said he has contacted potential broadcasters of the Fury-Joshua title fight to “make sure they are aware of who Daniel Kinahan is and to see if they are comfortable working with him.”

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“It is huge, and as a sports fan, I am obviously enthused by it. However, I am not enthused by the fact that Tyson Fury cited Daniel Kinahan three times in the announcement of this fight,” Richmond said in a twitter video posted by him.

“Daniel Kinahan, as we have learned in a sworn affidavit to the High Court last month, is a criminal mastermind behind one of the biggest drug feuds and drug operations in the country. It is extremely worrying that he has involved in this bout. It is extremely worrying that he is acting in Dubai and the UAE to bring it about.”

Irish Police has also refused to comment on the issue saying it “does not comment on public commentary on named individuals.”

As a matter of public record, a number of senior Officers of An Garda Síochána have given sworn evidence before a variety of Courts in this jurisdiction in relation to the activities of known criminal organizations,” said the Irish police in its statement.