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An audio guide to the week that was the Federal indictment alleging extortion of California State Athletic Commission

By Zach Arnold | August 3, 2014

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We wanted to create an audio summary for our readers to clear up any confusion about what last week’s Federal indictment (read it on the LA Times web site) involving disgraced California state senator Leland Yee means for fans who care about the regulation of combat sports.

The revised indictment in San Francisco alleges that Yee and his fundraising consultant Keith Jackson extorted individuals who were interested in keeping the California State Athletic Commission from being sunsetted into hiding under the auspices of the Department of Consumer Affairs. And the politicians being accused of extortion supposedly had ties to Chinatown mobsters.

It sounds like a remix of the movie Big Trouble in Little China. We wrote three articles about the indictment.

Given the serious nature of the indictment, Jeff Thaler (@whaledog on Twitter) & I decided to do a Fight Opinion Radio show to break down the legalese. Jeff’s a lawyer and combat sports guru, which makes him the perfect person to explain in layman’s terms what the hell is going on.

Listen to our audio summary on the Federal indictment regarding the alleged extortion of the California State Athletic Commission. 37 minutes long, 17 MB file size. The direct download link is:

Who are the key players in the Federal indictment? What would have happened if Leland Yee, running for Secretary of State in California, had not been arrested?

There will be substantial media interest in the revised indictment against Yee given that the indictment alleges a pay-for-play scenario with an anonymous NFL team owner to make sure that football players couldn’t apply for worker’s compensation in California. Because of this strong sports tie-in, we’re relatively confident that information regarding the Athletic Commission will surface.

The indictment reads like a mafia movie plot. What’s most interesting is that the indictment names all sorts of Undercover agents as informants but on the allegations regarding CSAC, we have Individuals A & B. How did those individuals end up being discovered by the Feds? Did they volunteer to talk to the Feds or did the Feds catch them during the alleged extortion process with wiretaps? Furthermore, if money allegedly changed hands between the Individuals and Yee/Jackson, whose money was used? Was it state money?

What happens if Yee & Jackson agree to a plea deal with the Feds? Will we find out who Individuals A & B are? What about a Pitchess motion for discovery or Brady disclosures?

What’s next for Andy Foster? The Florida Boxing Commission job was quietly filled behind the scenes by top DBPR attorney Paul Waters, replacing state auditor Cynthia Hefren. With no real major commission jobs open, ongoing DCA audits, and a Federal probe ongoing, how much stress & pressure is there on Andy to keep doing his job?

There are so many unanswered questions right now and this is the time to use some elbow grease to do some legitimate investigative work. I’m fairly confident that if several combat sports writers starting digging into this story that there is real news to be discovered for public consumption.

You can receive notifications about our latest audio shows any time by subscribing to our Feedburner link in your favorite podcasting program. We’ve had a really good streak of shows since returning from a five year hiatus. Lots of thought-provoking conversation to check out.

Topics: Boxing, CSAC, Fight Opinion Radio, Jeff Thaler, MMA, Media, UFC, Zach Arnold, podcasts | No Comments » | Permalink | Trackback |


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