According to Nicola Tallant and Niall Donald of the Sunday World Tyson Fury was stopped from boarding a flight to the US yesterday. They report that Tyson was halted by US immigration officials in the UK because of the sanctions laid down against suspected mob boss Daniel Kinahan.
Kinahan, who is believed to be the leader of the billion dollar narcotic smuggling outfit known as the Kinahan Organised Crime Group, was sanctioned by the US government in April. The US also announced a $5 million reward for information that leads to Kinahan’s arrest, prosecution and conviction.
The sanctions initially targeted Kinahan, along with his father Christy Kinahan (the alleged founder of the KOCG) and his brother Christopher Kinahan Jr. A number of businesses were also targeted by the sanctions. The sanctions prohibit any US citizen or company from doing business with Kinahan.
Recently the US has added more individuals and companies associated with Kinahan to their sanctions list. The US has also barred entry to the US for over 600 individuals who are associated with Kinahan.
Fury’s association with Kinahan is well documented. They were pictured together in February, enjoying a tour of an MMA gym in Dubai (where Kinahan is believed to reside). In 2020 Fury publicly thanked Kinahan for negotiating his contract to fight Anthony Joshua. Bob Arum, Fury’s US promoter, and Eddie Hearn, who has promoted a number of Fury’s recent opponents, have revealed that Kinahan was involved in a number of Fury’s past fight deals.
Fury is the second boxer to be denied entry into the US. In April former WBA middleweight title challenger Matthew Macklin was prevented from going to Las Vegas, where he was scheduled to work as part of the Sky Sports broadcast team for Shakur Stevenson and Oscar Valdez fight.
Macklin and Kinahan founded Macklin’s Gym Marbella (MGM) in 2012. MGM grew to become a well known regional boxing promotion in Spain and Ireland. In 2016 an MGM weigh-in at the Regency Hotel in Dublin was attacked by gunman, leading to the death of David Byrne.
Byrne was a suspected top lieutenant in the KOCG. It is believed Kinahan was the target of this attack and that it was part of the ongoing Hutch-Kinahan feud. Suspected Hutch Gang leader Gerry Hutch is currently standing trial on charges of ordering the attack. Hutch had previously survived a suspected Kinahan orchestrated assassination attempt in Spain.
After the Regency Hotel attack Kinahan moved to Dubai. MGM then rebranded to become MTK Global. The company also claimed to have stopped working with Kinahan.
MTK grew to be one of the biggest companies in world boxing and MMA. At its height it represented Fury, Billy Joe Saunders, Carl Frampton, Michael Conlan, Josh Taylor, Rocky Fielding, Sunny Edwards, Jack Catterall, Hughie Fury and dozens of other boxers. It’s MMA division represented Darren Till, Aleksandar Rakic, Taila Santos, Mounir Lazzez and many other UFC fighters.
Despite MTK claiming Kinahan was not involved with the company, over the years many fighters have joined Fury in shouting out Kinahan as a close friend and advisor.
MTK ceased operations in May, citing intense scrutiny as a result of the US sanctions against Kinahan.