SBD/25/Law Politics

DAY TWO OF MAFFIA TESTIMONY IN KING FRAUD TRIAL

     In his second day of testimony, Joseph Maffia, the former
Controller of Don King Productions, said that King instructed him
to "create" $350,000 in training expenses to justify an insurance
claim for a canceled '91 fight between Julio Cesar Chavez and
Harold Brazier.  Maffia said Chavez owed King $736,000 and King
wanted to recover some of that by attributing $350,000 of it to
training expenses.  Maffia is seen as the "key witness" in the
government's wire-fraud case against King.  Before the defense
"could impugn Maffia as an angry former employee," the
prosecution had him address the issue.  Maffia testified he has
gone from hating King and wanting to hurt him, to merely
disliking him.  The defense focused on details on the Chavez
contract and Maffia's deal with the government (Richard Sandomir,
N.Y. TIMES, 10/25).  ESPN's Jimmy Roberts: "The government had
their key witness on the stand for the better part of a day and a
half, yet it took the defense all of thirty minutes to offer
information that might severely limit the effectiveness of his
testimony" ("SportsCenter," 10/24).
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