Boxing: First round of court battle for King and Warren

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The Independent Online
DON KING and Frank Warren began the first round of what may be a protracted and acrimonious High Court battle yesterday.

King, the American promoter known for his flamboyance and peculiar use of language, is bringing an action against the British promoter who was his business partner over an agreement which broke down in December last year.

A spokesman for King said the promoter was in Mexico but might appear in court next week. But, asked if he thought King would come, Warren replied: "I don't think he will turn up."

King is claiming Warren owes him millions of dollars relating to a three- year contract the two signed back in 1994. He says the agreement entitles him to shares of all profits made from fights promoted by Warren, who includes World Boxing Organisation featherweight champion, Naseem Hamed, in his stable.

According to King, Warren signed an extension to the three-year deal but then reneged on it by negotiating a separate agreement with an American cable television network for Hamed at the end of last year. Warren, for his part, says the American did not fulfil his side of their deal.

King could be jailed next month when he faces a New York retrial over an alleged fraudulent insurance claim.

Warren, whose association with King dates back to 1985, is not without additional legal difficulties of his own. His Sports Network Europe company is currently under investigation over alleged tax irregularities.