INTRODUCTION: The United States Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) is working on a major case of embezzlement by two boxing promoters.
GV Exterior Promotion Group's building with sign outside.
CU Mr. Howard Bingham speaking
GV EXT Madison Square Garden
CU Boxing match sign board
CU Muhammad Ali speaking
SPEECH ON FILM (TRANSCRIPT)
SEQ. 2: REPORTERS: "Well, what's Ali's reaction to all this?"
DINGHAM: "Shock, you know. He's amazed. He wants to know what happened, how."
SEQ. 5: ALI: "The future of boxing depends on the outcome of this. But it would be nice if it could go on for the fighters mainly. They've been training and preparing and getting themselves ready. But I think that if nothing is worked out, it will be for the best."
REPORTER: "What does it boil down to. The problem now is just money?"
ALI: "Well, the fighters are asking for prices. And they're awful prices its impossible to make back. If you do make it back, it's impossible to make a profit. And people would rather work for a profit. So if they could come down in price, then the fight could go off. The prices are awful. They're not realistic and they can't be raised."
REPORTER: "It sounds like somebody ripped someone off."
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Script is copyright Reuters Limited. All rights reserved
Background: INTRODUCTION: The United States Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) is working on a major case of embezzlement by two boxing promoters. The case has shaken the boxing world and threatens a boxing extravaganza scheduled for Madison Square Garden in New York later this month. Former world heavyweight champion Muhammad Ali had a financial agreement with some of the suspects, in return for the use of his name in their enterprises. In announcing on Wednesday (4 February) his intention of quitting the ring to become a boxing promoter, Ali said he would not put any money to save the boxing programme. It was to have featured a fight between heavyweights Gerry Cooney and Ken Norton as well as three world title bouts. The Wells Fargo National Bank said its Beverly Hills branch was defrauded of over twenty-one million dollars, more than 8 million of it for the boxers.
SYNOPSIS: These are the offices of Muhammad Ali Professional Sports (MAPS), one of the defendants in the bank's lawsuit. Ali's friend Howard Bingham comments.
With the money still missing the Madison Square Garden event is in danger of being cancelled.