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Manny Pacquiao Accused of Assaulting Political Official and Vote-Buying

LAS VEGAS, NV - DECEMBER 08:  Manny Pacquiao screams in the ring before taking on Juan Manuel Marquez during their welterweight bout at the MGM Grand Garden Arena on December 8, 2012 in Las Vegas, Nevada.  (Photo by Al Bello/Getty Images)
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Mike ChiariFeatured Columnist IVDecember 28, 2016

Manny Pacquiao's boxing career may be on the downturn after consecutive losses, but his political career could be in danger as well, as Pac-Man is being accused of assaulting an official and using his considerable wealth to buy votes.

According to Jerry Adlaw of The Manila Times, Pacquiao allegedly attacked a barangay chairman by the name of Alfredo Belgica on Saturday night in General Santos City, Philippines. Pacquiao, who is seeking reelection as a representative for the Sarangani province, was reportedly delivering rice and cash to voters in the area prior to the incident.

Adlaw reports that Pacquiao and his bodyguards allegedly beat Belgica "almost to a pulp" after he tried to stop them from making deliveries. Belgica claims that Pacquiao and his entourage attacked him after he threatened to file charges against Pacquiao for buying votes.

According to Adlaw, however, General Santos City is not part of Pacquiao's constituency. Rather than campaigning for himself, Pac-Man was helping friend Ronnel Rivera, who is running for mayor in the area.

Pacquiao was reportedly allowed to leave the police station after being brought in for investigation. He was never questioned, according to Adlaw, and it remains to be seen what punishment, if any, is handed down to the former eight-division world champion.

According to Dan Rafael of ESPN, Pacquiao is scheduled to fight Brandon Rios in Macau on Nov. 24.

It is unclear if Pacquiao's incident in the Philippines will have any effect on his upcoming bout. Also, it will be interesting to see how or if it will influence the voters. Pacquiao is obviously a hero in the Philippines, but this situation certainly reflects poorly on him as a politician.

 

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