Boxing: Saunders fined for social media post promoting domestic abuse

FILE PHOTO: Boxing - Billy Joe Saunders Media Work-Out - BXR London, London, Britain - September 25, 2019. Billy Joe Saunders during the media work out. Action Images via Reuters/John Sibley

(Reuters) - WBO super middleweight champion Billy Joe Saunders has been found guilty of misconduct and fined by Britain’s boxing authorities for a social media post in which he advised men how to hit their female partners during the COVID-19 lockdown.

The British Boxing Board of Control (BBBofC) said in a statement that Saunders was fined 15,000 pounds ($19,000).

But it said the suspension on his licence, which was implemented in March, has now been lifted.

Saunders had filmed himself punching a bag in a barn and advising “dads, husbands and men with girlfriends” how to deal with their female partners during the lockdown.

"Following consideration of Mr. Saunders' explanation, the Stewards found Mr. Saunders guilty of misconduct and have fined him 15,000 pounds to be donated to charities," the BBBofC said in a statement here.

Saunders apologised for the video and has also pledged to donate 25,000 pounds to domestic abuse charities.

The Briton, who is unbeaten in 29 bouts and held a world title in the middleweight division before moving up to super-middleweight, was fined 100,000 pounds by the BBBofC in September 2018 for a previous social media post.

In that instance, Saunders posted a video in which he offered a woman drugs to perform a sex act on another person.

Reporting by Manasi Pathak; Editing by Hugh Lawson