World champion boxer Carl Frampton has said he has "no regrets" working with MTK Global, the boxing promoters founded by crime boss Daniel Kinahan.
Mr Frampton became a boxing legend over his 11-year career – and now he’s telling the story of his rise to the top of the sport in My Autobiography, coming out October 5th.
Co-written with Paul Gibson, My Autobiography details his life growing up in Belfast, his relationship with boxing promoter Barry McGuigan and his time working with MTK Global.
MTK Global, which was dissolved in 2022, was accused by other boxing promoters of being a front for money laundering from drug trafficking, although Mr Kinahan has sold his shares in the company.
Mr Frampton told The Hard Shoulder MTK Global never paid him money but advised him and connected him with other promoters to organise fights.
“You hear and you see these things in the press, but I signed up to a company with other fighters like Tyson fury, Billy Joe Saunders, some of the Smith brothers - a good roster of fighters,” he said.
“You see people talking about [Mr Kinahan] and asking about it, but over the border – without sounding horrible - it wasn't as much as a big deal up there in Belfast.”
"I don't regret it."
🥊 @RealCFrampton on when he realised he was a good boxer, the Kinahans, and his involvement with MTK. @TheHardShoulder
Hear the full interview from 5pm: https://t.co/vcdcSkdKXb pic.twitter.com/Jf3Nbg1adv
— NewstalkFM (@NewstalkFM) October 2, 2023
He said it was “a shock” when the US Treasury launched a crackdown on the Kinahans, but he doesn’t regret signing on with MTK Global.
“Boxing is a business,” he said.
“As you get a bit older and you've won the titles and you've won the fights, you want to have better security for your family.
“MTK were able to secure these for me... I was looked after by MTK, and that’s all I can say.”
Mr Frampton noted he joined MTK Global when he was “not being rewarded as [he] should have”.
The boxing champion ended his long-term partnership with former boxer and boxing promoter Barry McGuigan in 2017 and later sued him for withheld earnings.
'I was often called the fourth son'
Mr Frampton told The Hard Shoulder Mr McGuigan was a “hero” to him when he started his career – and it was a “massive” shock when he suspected his manager was withholding money from him.
“It looked like he was really looking after me,” he said.
“I was often called ‘the fourth son’... it took a while for me to get over it.
“My wife says to me all the time if someone speaks to me for 10 minutes, and they're a nice guy, I start thinking this guy could be my best friend.
“It’s a shame that it happened.”
You can listen back to more of Mr Frampton's story here: