Manny Pacquiao accused of 'mauling' political foe, denies charges

Ed Mulholland-US PRESSWIRE

Manny Pacquiao's political career has been hit with some drama, as the Filipino boxing superstar and Congressman has been accused of attacking an adversary, which he denies.

Manny Pacquiao was recently accused of "mauling" a barangay captain in the Philippines, and also of buying votes, but the boxing superstar and Filipino Congressman denies the charges, and has filed a complaint for harassment.

From the Manila Times:

Alfredo Belgica, the barangay chairman of San Jose, was beaten almost to a pulp by Pacquiao and his bodyguards at 11 p.m. on Saturday. Belgica claimed that Pacquiao and his bodyguards ganged up on him when he confronted them for going house-to-house and distributing cash and goods to families in the barangay. The lawmaker and his group arrived in the barangay in a five-car convoy. Part of the convoy was a truck loaded with rice and various goods Pacquiao and his men gave out to families in the community.

During the melee, Pacquiao and his bodyguards were arrested by police authorities and brought to the General Santos City police command based at Camp Fermin Lira Jr. for investigation. However, Pacquiao's lawyer, Geng Gacal, arrived at the police station and managed to squirrel him out of the camp before he could issue any statement.

And here's another report from GMA:

Manny Pacquiao has filed a complaint against a barangay chairman in General Santos City for allegedly harassing nine of his employees, according to television and radio reports Sunday.

Pacquiao and his lawyer rushed to the Fatima Police Station in General Santos City at around 1 a.m. Sunday after barangay chairman Alfredo Belgica allegedly threw rocks and fired several gunshots at Pacquiao's employees, according to Jennifer Solis' report on radio dzBB.

Pacquiao's lawyer told ABS-CBN that the allegations against his client are false:

"In fact, they [Belgica's camp] were the ones who mauled our supporters, fired shots at them, destroyed the vehicles. Pacquiao learned about what happened over the radio, and he went to the scene to pacify the people. ... They are just making this up out of desperation. It's election season, and the candidates supported by Pacquiao are leading in pre-election surveys. Let us wait for the paraffin test, and you'll see that I am right," Gacal said.

I have no idea about any of this because my interest in Filipino politics -- well, I was going to say it starts and ends at Manny Pacquiao, but it doesn't, really. I just don't really have any interest in Filipino politics. But that's what Manny's up to right now!

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