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CSAC backs Dan Goossen with legal opinion in lawsuit against Tony Thompson

By Zach Arnold | February 26, 2013

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On February 11th, we wrote an article titled Court ruling against Dan Goossen will scare California-based fight promoters. A quick summary: Goossen had a verbal contract with Tony Thompson with Maryland jurisdiction. Goossen filed suit in California for breach of contract & fraud. Judge Conrad Aragon in Los Angeles Superior Court ruled against Goossen, saying that Goossen needed a written contract and that the contract had to be validated by the California State Athletic Commission… for a fight taking place in Switzerland… with a contract based on German law.

The absurdity of the court ruling immediately had promoters & managers in California talking about how they should conduct their business affairs in the future.

Two weeks later, the California State Athletic Commission (via the Department of Consumer Affairs) issued a declaration for Dan Goossen’s legal case against Tony Thompson. The move is an eye-opener given that it’s coming from DCA and not from the state’s Attorney General office. Given the past history of AG lawyer Karen Chappelle, I suspect she would never issued the kind of legal opinion that DCA just issued to Dan Goossen. Can you say “political turf war”?

The legal declaration by DCA was filed in LA Superior Court on February 21st. The 15-page filing includes Goossen’s inquiry to CSAC:

What is CSAC’s position on whether CSAC believes the California Regulations apply to international fights? In other words, does CSAC require a California boxing promoter or manager to have contracts with a non-California fighter for an international fight to be in writing and approved by the Commission?

The response from CSAC:

After consulting with the California State Athletic Commission’s legal counsel and reviewing Business and Professions Code 18640, it is the Commission’s position that the California Boxing Act does not apply to international fights since they do not take place within the state of California and the Commission does not regulate such fights. The Commission does not have jurisdiction and does not require a California Manager or Promoter to be licensed or to have a Commission approved contract with a non California fighter for a fight that does not take place in the State of California.

The declaration by CSAC is very interesting. Money talks and there’s clearly a concern that the ruling against Dan Goossen in LA Superior Court will chase off California-based promoters from doing business in the state. Keep your eyes open on how this plays out.

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