Undefeated welterweight champion Floyd Mayweather Jnr will not be allowed to enter Australia after the immigration department refused to grant him a visa on Wednesday.
The boxer is banned from entering that country because of his abusive past. An on-line petition was launched via change.org to stop him from visiting the country because “he abused his ex-partner in front of his children and went to jail after abusing five different women”.
Mayweather, 37, was jailed in 2012 for an attack (two years earlier) on his ex-girlfriend and needs the Immigration Minister Peter Dutton to rubber stamp his visa application before heading down under next week, where he’s expected to be the star turn at two dinners in Melbourne and Sydney.
His ban has been confirmed by Assistant Minister for Immigration, Senator Michaelia Cash.
“The Government takes very seriously its role in protecting the Australian community from the risk of harm by non-citizens who engage in criminal conduct and/or conduct that is of serious concern.
“Visa applicants must demonstrate they are of good character, as required under the character test in the Migration Act 1958, before they are granted a visa. “I am aware of Mr Mayweather’s background – both in terms of his professional success as well as his criminal history.”
His local promoter, Max Markson, however, is still holding out hope that the boxing millionaire will be allowed to fly in with his entourage of 30 people, at some point.
“An Evening with Floyd Mayweather dinners and nightclub appearances in Melbourne on Thursday 5th February and Sydney on Friday 6th February have been postponed to new dates to be announced as soon as his visa is issued,” Mr Markson said. As precedents go, two years ago former heavyweight champion and convicted rapist Mike Tyson, also faced a backlash over his planned tour but was granted a visa in the end.
Mayweather served two of the three-month prison sentence he was handed for a hair-pulling, arm-twisting attack on former lover Josie Harris, as two of their three children watched.
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