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Egyptian Olympic boxer charged with murdering his daughter

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The former Olympic boxer had been on the run for a year before being charged with the murder. 

Joe Calzaghe v Kabay Salem Photo by John Gichigi/Getty Images

A former Olympic boxer whose punch once led to the death of a fellow pro boxer has been arrested on charges of murdering his own daughter

Kabary Salem is believed to have strangled his daughter—25-year-old Ola Salem— in Pennsylvania, where she was helping him set up a restaurant. According to reports, Salem drove her body back to Staten Island, dragged her into Bloomingdale Park and covered her with leaves. While the killing was believed to have taken place in October 2019, Salem fled the United States and was not tracked down by members of the U.S. Marshals Service and the NY/NJ Regional Fugitive Task Force until December 2020.

Salem was extradited back to New York State, where he was formally arrested is now being held on Rikers Island. The former pro boxer was arraigned on a seven-count indictment charging him with second-degree murder, first-degree manslaughter, concealment of a human corpse, first-degree strangulation and related offenses.

In an interview with The New York Times in November 2019, Salem attempted to divert suspicion away from himself by claiming that his daughter had expressed concerns of being followed by another vehicle on the highway.

“I want to know what happened to her, what is the reason for that — but no one tells me — I am just waiting,” he said at the time. “She was a really good, beautiful girl.”

Prior to being murdered, Ola Salem volunteered at the New York City-based Asiyah Women’s Center and advocated for women who suffered from domestic abuse.

As for Kabary Salem, he rose to prominence in his native Egypt during the 1992 and 1996 Olympic Games, where he was a pro boxer who went by “The Egyptian Magician.” However, even his time as a professional athlete was riddled with violent controversies. Known as a dirty fighter, Salem once knocked out opponent Randie Carver during a North American Boxing Federation bout in which Carver’s family accused Salem of head-butting him multiple times. The AP reported that Carver, 24, died two days later from blunt-force head trauma.