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Olympic boxing gold medals bought by Azerbaijan, claims BBC

An investigation by the BBC's Newsnight has uncovered sensational evidence that implicates the international boxing organisation World Series Boxing in a corruption scandal involving millions of dollars of illegal payments – to pay for Olympic gold medals.

Whistleblowers from within the organisation claim that the organisation's chief operating officer Ivan Khodabakhsh was involved in the sale of two boxing gold medals to Azerbaijan, in exchange for $9million (£5.9million). The Amateur Boxing Association (AIBA), of which the WSB (a franchised league of professional boxing) is one of its initiatives, admits that the money was paid to them by an Azeri national, but not to fix any Olympic tournaments. They say that the allegations are 'totally untrue and ludicrous'. However those who spoke to the BBC say that Khodabakhsh boasted about the money and the fix.

'Ivan boasted to a few of us that there was no need to worry about World Series Boxing having the coin to pay its bills,' said one. 'As long as the Azeris got their medals, WSB would have the cash.'

Another said that Mr Khodabakhsh said that ''we are safe now - Azerbaijan came in - we have to give them medals for that'. He was talking about gold medals in London in return for millions of dollars of secret payments. Medals are being sold so blatantly it's amazing.'

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