The Seoul Eastern District Prosecutors’ Office has issued an arrest warrant for MMA fighter Choi Hong Man on charges of fraud up to 100 million won (approximately $91,600). After Choi Hong Man refused to comply with several demands that he appear for questioning, the court issued the warrant on October 20.
Road FC, with whom the MMA fighter currently has a contract, says that Choi Hong Man returned to Korea on October 24 after staying in Japan. A representative from the prosecutors’ office said, “If he is in Korea, we will consider the situation and decide whether or not to enforce the arrest warrant. If he continues to refuse to appear at the prosecution office, it is likely that the warrant will be enforced.”
According to the prosecution, Choi Hong Man is accused of borrowing 710,000 HKD (approximately 100 million won or $91,600) from an acquaintance in Hong Kong in December 2013 under the pretext that he was buying watches for himself and his girlfriend.
Recently, Choi Hong Man made a comeback to the mixed martial arts scene in July but lost in the first round. Jung Moon Hong, a Road FC representative, said, “When Choi Hong Man lost his comeback match, he received severe emotional shock. He confined himself in Japan and hardly contacted anyone.”
Choi Hong Man debuted as a professional Korean wrestler in 2003, winning the 41st Cheonhajangsa Ssireum Championship. In 2004 he switched to MMA fighting and gained popularity in Korea and Japan. In 2009, he lost to Japan’s Minowa Ikuhisa and did not appear in any matches for six years.
The MMA fighter is scheduled to participate in the Shanghai Road FC tournament on December 25. However, his participation is up in the air depending on the progress of the prosecutors’ investigation.
“We want to give him the opportunity to participate, but right now he’s hard to contact,” Representative Jung said. “We don’t know anything about the situation either.”