Former world welterweight champion Ricardo Mayorga was arrested and later released in his native Nicaragua yesterday on suspicion of rape. There was no word if his Oct. 2 bout against Felix Trinidad in New York's Madison Square Garden was in jeopardy.
According to an Associated Press report, Mayorga was released after his lawyer, Sergio Morales, charged that the arrest warrant used to detain the boxer had expired Thursday. Appeals court judge Ricardo Gomez ordered Mayorga freed and upheld an injunction filed by Morales that will allow his client to travel to New York.
Mayorga was arrested at Managua's international airport while trying to return to the United States. The AP reported that a 20-year-old woman said the boxer beat and sexually abused her after he invited her to his hotel room. Mayorga told an AP reporter that he had a "normal relationship with her and that hotel employees are witnesses that she was happy when she left the hotel."
"I gave her two bills of 500 cordobas [about $30 each] and we said goodbye," Mayorga said from his jail cell in Managua. The report said Mayorga was smoking a cigarette and asked a photographer to take a photo of him in a boxing pose. Asked about his fight against Trinidad, Mayorga said, "I think that it was suspended and Trinidad will fight somebody else, but I'm not sure."
Don King, the fight's promoter, was traveling from the Republican Convention in New York yesterday, and a spokesman said he would address the situation after tonight's heavyweight fight between Lamon Brewster and Kali Meehan in Las Vegas.
The 31-year-old Trinidad (41-1) won welterweight, junior middleweight and middleweight championships before announcing his retirement more than two years ago. Mayorga (27-1-4, 23 knockouts) hasn't fought since losing his WBA welterweight championship belt to Cory Spinks in December.
-- Mark Schlabach