British boxer Billy Joe Saunders has had his license suspended following a social media video in which he seemingly advocated domestic violence.
In the video, the world super-middleweight champion appeared to demonstrate how men could hit their partners if “your old woman is giving you mouth” during the CCP (Chinese Communist Party) virus lockdown.
The video, in which Saunders used a punching bag to show how to hit a woman “on the chin,” has been deleted, but the British Boxing Board of Control (BBBofC) has since punished the 30-year-old.
“Having considered comments made by Billy Joe Saunders on social media we have suspended his boxer’s license pending a hearing under the Board’s misconduct regulation, at a time and venue to be confirmed as soon as possible,” the BBBofC said in a statement.
Saunders later apologized for the video, saying in a tweet he “would never condone domestic violence” and revealed he has received death threats as a result.
“I am getting a lot of hate mail wishing me dead, wishing my family and my kids dead,” he told Talksport on March 30.
“I haven’t got another half, but I have got a daughter and if anyone did that to my daughter, I would hurt them bad.”
Saunders’ promoter Eddie Hearn said he is “appalled” by the video.
“It was so idiotic, it was so frustrating because I know Billy well,” he also told Talksport Monday. “It’s one step forward, four steps back with Billy Joe Saunders.
“It’s unacceptable for Joe Bloggs down the street to do it. It’s much more unacceptable for a world champion boxer to be doing it.
“Young people are watching that video. People who are in abusive relationships are watching that video. You cannot do it, it’s unacceptable.”
Saunders is unbeaten in 29 fights, and held a world title in the middleweight division before moving up to super-middleweight.
He had been close to fighting Canelo Alvarez in May, before the spread of the CCP virus disrupted talks between the two camps.
Having deleted his Twitter account, the British boxer said he would donate $30,000 (£25,000) to domestic violence charities.
“I didn’t mean for anyone to get upset about it,” he added. “There are people dying all around the world with coronavirus and I was just trying to take the heat off that a little bit.
“It clearly hasn’t done, my sense of humor is not everyone’s cup of tea.”
™ & © 2020 Cable News Network, Inc., a WarnerMedia Company. All rights reserved.
NTD staff contributed to this report.