Atlantis Tower owner Colin Abbott says he did not organise bout where young boxer Kuba later died
Archant Norfolk © 2016
The owner of a venue where a young boxer was knocked unconscious and later died said he was not involved in organising the event.
Jakub Moczyk, 22, known to his friends and family as Kuba, was rendered unconscious by a punch to the head during the third round of his first public fight in Great Yarmouth, Norfolk.
He was taken from the Atlantis Tower Arena venue to hospital on November 19 2016 and died two days later, Norfolk Coroner’s Court in Great Yarmouth heard.
Colin Abbott, who owns the complex which includes the first-floor arena where the boxing event happened, was asked by Norfolk’s senior coroner Jacqueline Lake on Wednesday if he was involved in the organisation of the event.
He replied: “No.”
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He said he rents out spaces in the building, including to KFC and Subway on the ground floor.
He said a previous tenant left the arena in August 2016 and Ryan Martin, who was running a bar on the building’s ground floor, “asked if he could have a go at renting the arena. He wanted to take it on to see if he was capable of running it with a view of signing the lease”.
Asked if there was a premises licence in place at the time of the boxing match, Mr Abbott declined to answer.
Mr Abbott said a friend told him a man called Aurelius Kerpe “was interested in putting a boxing night on”, and Mr Abbott introduced Mr Kerpe to Mr Martin.
Ryan Martin, whose company Landmark Tower Ltd was operating the Landmark bar on the ground floor, said he was asked to run the bars in the arena for the boxing match.
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He said Mr Abbott told him a boxing night had been arranged with an associate.
“I assumed it was all being dealt with and taken care of,” said Mr Martin. “It was assumed that I would be running the bars as I had done for a previous event.
“Never was there discussion about being involved in running that event.”
He said he signed a room hire agreement, as did Mr Kerpe.
Asked who he saw as responsible for hosting the event, he replied: “Mr Kerpe.”
Earlier in the day Benjamin Poole, who was helping in the opponent’s corner and made the 999 call, said Mr Moczyk took a heavy blow in the third round, “didn’t look right” and was asked by the referee if he could continue.
“Every fighter will say they can continue, even when they can’t see, it’s a pride thing,” he said.
He said Mr Moczyk then took a “corkscrew” shot and another blow to the head.
“I’ve never seen a knockout blow like that before, he was out before he hit the floor,” he said.
The inquest concludes today (October 12).