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Disgraced Midland boxer branded ‘a bully and coward’ for vicious assault


The family of a father-of-three savagely beaten in an armed street attack involving one of the Midlands’ most popular boxers have branded the muscled middleweight a coward and bully. And the brother of victim Shakeel Younis says hot prospect Ammir Fiaz should be banished from professional boxing, in any capacity, for good.

As it is, the fighting career of 23-year-old Fiaz, who has fought exclusively out of Birmingham, lies in tatters. The sport’s governing body, the British Boxing Board of Control, put his licence on ice as soon as he admitted causing actual bodily harm and having a baseball at the scene of the Regent Street, Wellington, violence.

 

That ban cost the shamed boxer a high-profile appearance on a Saudi Arabian bill topped by former world champion Amir Khan. On Thursday, at Shrewsbury Crown Court, Fiaz, who has a huge following in his native Telford, was jailed for 15 months. His partners in crime in that December attack, 19-year-old Mohammed Idris and Mohammed Habib, were jailed for three years, three months and two years, respectively.

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Ammir Fiaz

They both admitted causing actual bodily harm, and Habib, 22, also pleaded guilty to making a video that included intimidating threats towards victim Shakeel. The sentences have been welcomed by Shakeel’s brother, Naz Younis, who describes the harrowing incident as “totally unprovoked”. “Justice has been done,” the taxi driver tells the Sunday Mercury.

Shakeel, aged 46, was attacked outside his home in Regents Street, Wellington, and left bruised and bleeding. Naz accused former amateur star Fiaz of letting down the sport, his fans, and the Asian community in Telford. “This was always about the victim,” he says. “This was an unprovoked attack by three assailants, one carrying a weapon. They left him lying where they found him.

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Habib Mohammed

“A professional boxer, who was respected, went armed, in broad daylight, with a baseball bat. That is cowardly. “He should not box again. The boxing board should not give him his licence back; he should not even be able to work in a gym. “Being a professional boxer, he was looked up to as a role model. He has thrown that in the gutter. The defendants’ actions on that day were cowardly and brutal. “He is a 23-year-old professional boxer. Is that really the image he wants to portray? This was the actions of a thug.”

Naz stresses his family has not a shred of sympathy for the high career price Fiaz has paid for one moment of madness. “He is responsible for his actions,” says Naz, “he was responsible for his actions on that day. “He has let himself down and also his family and the community who now look on him in a totally different way. “This is not acceptable in our community – three people attacking a man who had done nothing to provoke them. Shakeel was just getting out of a car and wasn’t even given the chance to reach his front door. This should not have happened.”

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The family of Shakeel, involved in an Ironbridge hairdressing business, praise West Mercia Police for bringing the attackers to book – and the judge for imposing prison sentences. “They thought they were untouchable,” says Naz. “We thank the police for their work in, what was, a difficult case.

He added: “I want to compliment the judge in this case for sending out a clear message that this will not be tolerated. “This has had a profound effect on our family, but now we can put it to rest and move on. “I saw no remorse, there is no remorse, for the defendants’ actions – and there was certainly no justification.”



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