Amir Khan has expressed how “sorry” he feels for Brian “Bomac” McIntyre over the reputational damage caused by the suspended sentence he received for bringing a gun into the UK.
McIntyre worked the corner of Chris Eubank Jr the night of his victory, in September, in his rematch with Liam Smith, but forgot that an automatic self-loading pistol was in his suitcase when in August he arrived from the US.
Officials at Manchester Airport found the weapon when he was flying home, leading to his arrest and most recently him being sentenced to 20 months in prison, suspended for two years.
McIntyre, who admitted unlawful possession of a firearm and ammunition, had a licence to carry it in the US and was unaware that it was in his luggage until it was detected at the airport. It was after hearing about McIntyre’s work in the community in Omaha, and listening to a number of character witnesses – including from Khan’s one-time opponent Terence Crawford – that Judge Nicholas Dean KC, the Honorary Recorder of Manchester, imposed the suspended sentence.
Khan first encountered the 53-year-old McIntyre as Crawford’s opponent in 2019, and then recruited him to train him for his defeat by Kell Brook last year. Like Crawford he is willing to vouch for what he perceives to be McIntyre’s integrity, and is frustrated for him that having seen McIntyre inspire career-best performances from both Crawford and Eubank Jr in their victories over Errol Spence and Smith, his achievements are at risk of being overshadowed.
“He’s a good man, and I feel really sorry for him,” he told ProBox TV. “Because for a guy like him, who was going to be the best trainer of the year – got that great win with Eubank; great win with Crawford. I mean, wow, he would have been trainer of the year. It’s just a big shame that he’s been caught with something silly. Something that’s so – it’s a silly mistake, really.
“It could be done accidentally, but really, when a gun comes into the UK and he’s had it in his possession… Imagine that got out on the streets. I was speaking to one of the officers and I told him, ‘Can you break this down for me? He didn’t know about it. He had it in his bag; it might have been put in there.’ But he goes, ‘What if that gun got in the wrong hands?’ He forgot and it got left in his bag. Bomac is not that type of guy that would carry a gun – he doesn’t need to. He didn’t carry guns when he was in New York. He forgot.”
The retired Khan spoke as someone who was robbed of a £72,000 watch at gunpoint in Leyton, East London, in April 2022.
One of the talking points surrounding McIntyre’s arrest had been of how Crawford, who established himself as the world’s finest fighter in victory over Spence, would be affected by his potential absence, but Shakur Stevenson, another of the world’s leading fighters, believes that Crawford is so advanced that he would have been fine.
“Bomac was with him his whole career, so I don’t think that will have too much of an effect on him,” he told ProBox TV. “He knows everything.
“Bud is Bud at the end of the day. You’ve got other great trainers, you’ve got to understand, that are good. But Bud is going to be okay.”