Organized Crime in Boxing

The SCI’s December 1985 final report confirmed so serious an intrusion of organized crime into boxing that, were the same mob presence to afflict such other professional sports as baseball or football, it would constitute a public scandal.

Dissection of a dozen case histories not only reflected the ineffectiveness of the regulatory process in stamping out organized crime but also the inability of the regulators and managers and promoters as well to prevent boxers from becoming brain-damaged and blinded. As a result, the SCI joined the American Medical Association and other medical groups in urging that professional boxing be banned. In the meantime, the SCI proposed a series of further reforms, to reduce the physical hazards of boxing, as well as its organized crime taint. Bills requiring background checks of prospective licensees, including promoters and managers, were enacted in 1986-87. Other “reforms” which were below the standards urged by the SCI also were enacted in 1988 (See 1983-88 interim report on boxing).

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