WAIL! The CyberBoxingZone Journal
September 2000 issue

Bruno on Boxing

By Joe Bruno--Former Vice President of the Boxing Writers Association and the International Boxing Writers Association

Sunday August 20, 2000

News Item: IBF President Bob Lee Found guilty of laundering money he received in bribes, and also of failing to claim said money on his income tax return. But is found innocent of ever receiving said bribes in the first place.

    If this previous sentence makes no sense, now you understand the sham the
judicial system has become in the United States of America.

    On the surface it seemed like a slam dunk for the federal prosecution based in Newark, New Jersey. A long line of witnesses, including promoters, Bob Arum, Cedrick Kushner and Dino Duva, testified they paid bribes to IBF President Bob Lee though his intermediary Doug Beavers, who was the prosecution’s star witness. The jury even saw a videotape of Beavers taking a wad of cash, big enough to choke Rosie O’Donnell, out of his sock in a hotel room and handing said cash to Lee. What did the jury think the money was for?

Boxing gloves for the fighters? Styling gel for Don King?

    The evidence was overwhelming. And Lee’s entire defense was the identical defense used by a killer named O. J. Simpson, namely, “The big, bad racist  government is out to get me because I’m an African-American in the lily white
world of the United States of America, so help me Louis Farrakhan.” And a jury of 12 nincompoops bought this rubbish, hook, line and Judge Ito too.

    This Federal jury of disgrace deliberated 15 days before finding Lee innocent on all but six of the 33 felony charges he faced, including racketeering. The jurors said they placed little faith in 22 days of testimony by Beavers, the former IBF ratings chairman who secretly recorded Lee for 18 months to prove he took bribes to rig ratings of boxers.

    "I didn't believe him 100 percent," said juror Donald Miller.

    Well, how about 95 percent, you moron. Wouldn’t 50 percent even be enough to convict a thief like Lee? You saw the freaking pictures of Lee accepting bribes, didn’t you? Or did you forget?

    These same  jurors also didn't believe Beavers when he said he went to a New Jersey Turnpike rest stop to give bribery money to Bob Lee's son, Robert Jr., to split with his iniquitous old man. The younger Lee, a chip off the old felon, was amazingly acquitted of all charges prosecutors brought against him.

    There’s a real good chance Lee junior is a black man too.

    "We don't believe it happened," jury foreman Gerard A. Brand said about the turnpike meeting. Brand said he thinks Beavers kept the cash and placed it in a "strongbox."

    So now we have jurors concocting alternative stories to what people may or may have not done, than using these imaginary tales to acquit obvious outlaws.

    Jurors also rejected the testimony of manager Stan Hoffman, who said he had to ok $100,000 from promoter Bob Arum to give Lee to sanction a title fight between George Foreman and Axel Schulz. Hoffman said he paid Lee $96,000 of the $100,000 over a period of several months. "We just didn't know what happened with the money," said juror Maurice Glasser. Another dodo bird of 12.

    And here’s the kicker. The jurors said that although they believe bribery payoffs occurred, they could not convict Lee of racketeering under the New Jersey commercial bribery statute because much of the graft took place outside the state.

    So these nutso jurors concluded Lee took bribery payments, laundered the cash and failed to claim it on his freaking income tax return, but is INNOCENT of taking the bribery payments in the first place, because all these shenanigans took place in another state?

    Was this not a Federal trial, you bumbling blockheads?

    And who was the judge who charged the jury before deliberations? Judge Crater? Norm Crosby? Marcel Marceau?

    If you readers out there think this sham of a trial  only affects the sordid world of boxing and not the rest of the American population, I’d like to sell you condominiums on the moon.

    The message here is simple. If you have enough money, even money paid to you in illegal bribes, you can hire lawyers more competent than the legal eagles who work for the government, which is about 99 percent of the judicial population on earth. Face it people, if the government lawyers had any genius
for the law, or talent for trials, they’d be working in the private sector and making millions, instead of mooching peanuts on the public dole.

    In boxing,  it’s back to  business as usual. Crooks like King and Arum will continue to manipulated the boxing masses. But the IBF extortion trail in Newark, New Jersey last week  puts John Q. Public on notice. If you want a honest trial,  tune into Judge Judy.

    And pray to God you don’t get wrongly arrested, with a bank book the size of Don King’s conscience, forcing you to spend a good portion of the rest of your life incarcerated, with a cell mate who believes in tough love through intense pain.

    Hurts even to think about it.

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