Joseph Parker linked to international drug syndicate which he denies as AJ rival loses battle to keep name from court

FORMER heavyweight champion Joseph Parker has been accused of having connections with an international drug ring.

The 29-year-old lost a two-year battle to keep his name suppressed from the public.

It is alleged by prosecutors that Parker played a role in the importation of methamphetamine by transporting and exchanging currency.

Parker has strongly denied involvement under oath and has never been charged by the police.

His statement made to the court read: "I have never changed or transported money for the defendants.

"I have never been involved in the purchase, supply or consumption of methamphetamine.”

Three men were found guilty in 2019 of importing meth from California to Auckland and the court believe Parker was connected in some form.

According to Fox Sports, the court alleges that Parker bought meth and spoke with the three men involved about the chances of finding a supplier.

Parker was also accused of exchanging currency on behalf of the convicted men.

One men of the men convicted, Tevita Sitanilei Kulu, was adjudged to have name-dropped Parker in a conversation with a supplier in California.

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After his phone was seized by police, a message on his device read: "Alright bro..I got u tho..have all ur money..the dude I was with that’s on my snapchat is going to change it to U.S currency..

"They wont question him bout all the money..cause he’s the WOB boxing champion so pple know he rich anyways so he’ll be good to change it with no hassles [sic].”

As Parker lost his two-year battle to keep his involvement in the trial private, the Supreme Court judgment said 'there is no dispute that publication would cause undue hardship to the applicant' but 'open justice' must prevail.

He is one of the biggest sporting names in New Zealand and held the WBO heavyweight title from 2016 to 2018.

He was undefeated for 24 fights until he lost his title to Anthony Joshua in 2018.

Parker last fought in February, taking a points victory over Junior Fa.

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