the fighter

the fighter

Inside the Fighter: Michael Carbajal

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By Brian Fogg Often life after boxing can be just as tough as the battles inside the ring. We gained insight of this last week when Michael Carbajal came onto Leave it in the Ring Radio. Carbajal, a 1988 Olympic medalist, had a long career at the highest level. He brought attention to the smaller weight classes, bringing in the first seven-figure purse for someone of his size. He was a pioneer for the fighters who followed in Erik Morales, Marco Antonio Barrera and Manny Pacquiao. In the later years of his career he came back after a two year layoff in 1999 and stopped a young titlist in Jorge Arce (who will be fighting for a belt this coming weekend), despite trailing on all scorecards. This would be his final fight but only seven years later he was inducted to the International Boxing Hall of Fame. Throughout his career the fan base was led to believe that his brother, Danny Carbajal, was aiding him in the corner. This gave the impression that they were a tight-knit family. Michael told LIITR in the interview that “Danny was only there when the cameras where on. My dad taught me how to fight.” While Michael was out of town for his IBHOF induction, his brother defrauded him and stole over $100,000. He did this by forging Michael’s name. Michael thinks that “the greed got to him.” The properties were returned to Michael in 2011 and more recently in 2013, a judge ruled that Danny’s ownership of the 9th St. gym was fraudulent and was also returned to Michael. Danny’s troubles did not end here. In 2004 Danny was charged with three counts of stealing hundred’s of thousand’s from his former wife, Sally Carbajal. Danny served three and a half years for this. Sally was killed in what was ruled a homicide only three days before their divorce trial. Records say that she would have got nearly $750,000 in assets. Danny Carbajal was and still is the main suspect. “He is the number one suspect for the homicide. I know damn well he did it. They just don’t have the evidence. They’ll catch him one day.” Michael said about his brother on air. In 2012, Danny was hit with a $196,000 federal tax lien and is now squaring off with the IRS. The alleged fraud scheme’s did not stop upon his release. Recently he has applied for a promoter’s license with his grandson Keenan as the front man. Keenan’s was indicted on two counts of aggravated assault on 12/30/13. This allegedly involved choking his girlfriend. There was an attempt to sweep this under the table to preserve his reputation just 2 months prior to him going before the Boxing Commission. Keenan’s mother has allegedly threatened the victim and tried to manipulate her statements. Michael says that, “I don’t know what is happening but I hope they get him.” As is common in boxing, Keenan applied for a boxing license and was granted it under the name of Ben Miranda Promotions as his grandfather would not be sanctioned due to his criminal record. The commission had no knowledge of the prior incidents. Ben Miranda was a successful local promoter in Arizona who passed. Neither he or his family are involved in this venture and other than in name, has no connection to the former business. The newly formed Ben Miranda Promotions had their first card last week and will continue to promote despite being managed by Danny, his two daughters and Keenan Carbajal. Michael no longer maintains a relationship with his brother and does not plan to reconcile. You can listen Dave Duenez and Gabriel Montoya speak to Michael Carbajal on our home page or on our mobile app.