Reporting Bernie Tafoya
NORTHBROOK, Ill. (CBS) — One of Chicago’s best-known boxers faces deportation after being in the United States for 21 years.
As WBBM Newsradio’s Bernie Tafoya reports, Andrew Golota, 44, made millions of dollars fighting as a heavyweight against Mike Tyson, Riddick Bowe and other boxing legends.
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The now-retired boxer was born in Poland, and has lived as a legal permanent resident in the United States for all of the past 21 years, the Chicago Tribune reports.
But it was when Golota applied for U.S. citizenship that his troubles began, the Tribune reported. Criminal background checks are conducted when an immigrant applies for citizenship, and Golota has a couple of misdemeanor convictions, the newspaper reported.
He was able to get a 9-year-old case in Will County stricken, but in Cook County, he was not able to get a weapons conviction tossed, the Tribune reported. In 2006, he pleaded guilty to a case that involved 12 firearms found around his home when his Firearms Owner Identification Card had been temporarily revoked, the Tribune reported.
Because of the guilty plea, Golota, of Northbrook, now faces deportation, the Tribune reports. His wife tells the newspaper the decision on the deportation case is due in September.
Golota won a bronze medal in the 1988 Seoul Olympics, and moved to Chicago in 1991 after marrying a U.S. citizen of Polish descent the year before.
Golota is best known for his fight against then-heavyweight champion Riddick Bowe at New York’s Madison Square Garden on July 11, 1996, in which he ended up being disqualified for repeatedly punching Bowe below the belt. The incident led to a riot at the stadium, in which several police officers and spectators – and Golota himself – were injured.