Boxing

Andre Derrell.

Andre Derrell's uncle could face long spell in prison after Jose Uzcategui punch

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Leon Lawson, uncle of boxer Andre Dirrell, could be looking at 25 years in prison after he was charged with first-degree assault.

Trainer Lawson got into the ring to punch an unsuspecting Jose Uzcategui after the Venezuelan’s boxing match with his nephew was stopped on May 21.

Uzcategui landed a knockout on Derrell, but was disqualified by the referee because the blow came well after the eighth-round bell.

Outraged by the cheating, Lawson entered the ring as Derrell was seen to by doctors and, incredibly, hooked Uzcategui on the chin while he wasn’t looking.

It was a moment which shamed the sport, and the charge sheet brought against Lawson has now been shared on social media.

The complaint to police was made by Sean Gibbons, Uzcategui’s advisor, and he tweeted a picture of the rap sheet from the District Court of Maryland for Prince George’s County.

It reveals the gravity of the situation, with charges for first and second degree assault which look similar but carry very different penalties.

Assault in the second degree could result in a maximum punishment of 10 years in prison and/or a $2,500 fine, while a conviction for first degree could see him jailed for up to 25 years.

Anthony Dirrell v Norbert Nemesapati

The charge reads: “Did assault Jose Uzccategui in the first degree violation of CR 3-202, contrary to the form of the act of the assembly in such case made and provided against the peace, government and dignity of the state.”

According to Gibbons, Uzcategui is also planning to appeal the decision of the referee, after he was judged to have intentionally hit Derrell after the bell.

Gibbons tweeted: “Yes Team Uzcategui is 1000 per cent appealing the call! Referee blew the call there was nothing intentional about Uzcategui and the punch.”

Gibbons was not alone in his fury, as fighters everywhere condemned the actions of Lawson.

Carl Frampton called on him to be banned from boxing for life, saying: “You cannot possibly defend Leon Lawson. Should be banned from the sport forever. Scumbag!”

Conor McGregor’s coach also weighed in with his opinion, tweeting: “Protect yourself at all times. Hopefully he [Lawson ] does some time for this cowardly cheap shot.”

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