Concrete Evidence Leads to Boxer's Suspension

LOS ANGELES — Former welterweight titleholder Antonio Margarito had his license suspended Wednesday by the California State Athletic Commission while it investigates a plaster-like substance found under the boxer's hand wraps before his loss last weekend to Shane Mosley.

The commission also suspended the license of Margarito's trainer Javier Capetillo and asked both to appear at a hearing Feb. 10.

The substance was bagged as evidence before the bout Saturday at Staples Center and was being analyzed by the California Department of Justice, the commission said. The panel was investigating whether any rules were violated.

Commission Chairman Tim Noonan said the inquiry stems from a commission rule that limits the amount and type of gauze and tape allowed under a fighter's glove. He said the commission has authority to discipline athletes when their actions are a "discredit to boxing." Reprimands could include fines, suspensions or revocation of licenses.

The commission did not say how long the investigation would last.

Bill Caplan, a spokesman for Margarito's promoter, said the boxer has obtained a lawyer and plans to attend the hearing.

"He expects to prove himself innocent," Caplan told The Associated Press.

Caplan said he did not have any information on what substance was found on the hand wraps or what evidence the boxer planned to present. He referred further comment to the boxer's promoter, Bob Arum, who did not immediately return a message left at his office Wednesday night.

Margarito, of Tijuana, Mexico, lost his WBA welterweight title to Mosley in nine rounds and dropped to 37-6 with 27 knockouts. The 30-year-old didn't win a single round on one judge's scorecard, one on another and two on the third before the ninth. He had his hands rewrapped before the fight after a complaint by Mosley's trainer.

Margarito was coming off an impressive victory over previously unbeaten Miguel Cotto six months ago.

Copyright AP - Associated Press
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