January 8, 2012 by David K. Sutton
Mayweather: Celebrities and the Judicial System
I begin by pleading ignorance to the facts of this domestic violence case involving boxer Floyd Mayweather Jr., but I feel the need to write about it after seeing that the jail term had apparently been influenced by the fame and notoriety of the guilty party. That’s not to say that all celebrities get away with crimes – including Mayweather – but this particular case is a great example of the notoriety of the guilty party influencing a decision by a judge. For some context, an article from the AP / CBS News – Mayweather Vegas jail term suspended until June 1 – states:
A judge in Las Vegas on Friday gave Floyd Mayweather Jr. until June 1 to turn himself in to serve a 90-day jail sentence for his guilty plea in a domestic violence case, allowing the undefeated boxer to meet contractual obligations for a Cinco de Mayo fight against an as-yet unnamed opponent.
The ruling by Justice of the Peace Melissa Saragosa came with Mayweather’s manger and supporters, including rap star Lil’ Kim and R&B artist Ray J, in the courtroom.
Saragosa said she was swayed by a last-minute plea by Mayweather’s lawyer, Richard Wright, to let Mayweather postpone his sentence so he can train to fight on the May 5 date his promoters have reserved at the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas and promised to pay-per-view television.
Wright said Mayweather wasn’t trying to avoid the sentence, and emphasized the potential economic benefit of attracting fight fans and hotel guests to Las Vegas for a Mayweather fight.
Minutes later, Mayweather, 34, was seen driving a new white Bentley Mulsanne out of a nearby parking structure with at least one other person in the car.
I may be ignorant when it comes to the facts of the case but it is clear that the jail sentence was delayed due to the notoriety of the guilty party. Whether or not the economic argument of Mayweather’s lawyer is valid is beside the point. The optics of this only serves to solidify in the collective consciousness – if you have wealth, power and fame you can influence any branch of government to your benefit. The case itself isn’t all that important but I think it further alienates the citizenry of this country from those who are running the country.