For Amir Khan the antidote to pain has been to grow up and calm down. Not the sharp pain in the broken right hand which has stabbed at him throughout his professional career. The far deeper hurt that came with betrayal of trust.
Khan doesn’t know exactly how many of his millions went missing but he was devastated to find where the trail led. To some of those closest to him.
At 30, at last he has control over affairs to which he never gave a moment’s thought as he concentrated on winning world titles.
He says: ‘For the first time I have taken charge of my own life. I am the boss now. And I have to deal as an adult with something pretty crushing.’
The grow-up call came six months ago. One million pounds had been paid out of his bank account for which he had no explanation. The budget for constructing one of his projects — a wedding and banqueting centre in Bolton — suddenly doubled to £6million.
The financial damage can be repaired with fights in the offing, which he still expects to include a £32m Dubai bonanza against his friend and former sparring partner Manny Pacquiao, despite delays in the negotiations.
The emotional damage takes longer to heal. He says: ‘I was shocked. I suddenly realised I was being ripped off. Certain property consultants and accountants were among those who had to go.’
It wasn’t the money which cut the deepest wound. He explains: ‘I could see that some people were cashing out. They thought I was washed up and there would be no more big-money fights. That was so cynical. I’d thought they were people who believed in me.’
The issue became distressingly confused with the family feud which erupted about the same time. Khan’s wife Faryal revealed that she was being attacked by his sisters for refusing to conform with the strictest elements of the Islamic dress code. This was a position which seemed to find sympathy with Amir’s parents. Amir and Faryal, although devout, are modernist Muslims.
The situation became more vexed as Khan sacked some, including relatives, and split with others in his team. The break was far from amicable, as he illustrates: ‘When I started going through things at the office they simply walked out. Just left me to deal with things I knew nothing about.
Full story can be found on Daily Mail Website
EXCLUSIVE hi-res images can be found on our website www.scopefeatures.com