A BOXER who kidnapped a man in a terrifying two-day ordeal never got over a career-crushing injury, according to friend and former world champion Alex Arthur.
Fundo Mhura handcuffed business associate Ricardo Cerden, threatening him with a samurai sword and dirty hypodermic syringe in a dispute over money.
Mr Cerden was so scared he asked for his last rites and even offered to hang himself using gym ropes in Mhura’s West Lothian home to end the ordeal.
He finally escaped by diving out of the living room window and pleaded for help from a postman.
Mhura, of Kaimes Crescent, Kirknewton, admitted abduction, assault and robbery at Edinburgh High Court yesterday.
Malawi-born Mhura grew up in Scotland and joined Leith Victoria boxing club. He won bronze at the 2006 European Amateur Boxing Championships.
Mhura also won a Scottish welterweight title and has also fought at middleweight, but an eye problem forced him to withdraw from the British Olympic training squad in 2007.
Ex-WBO champion Arthur said he was shocked to hear he had fallen into a life of crime.
“He was a really nice guy, a lovely guy to talk to that never had a bad word to say about anyone,” he said.
“Every time I met him he couldn’t be nicer. I had heard he was in a wee bit of trouble but nothing else. It’s pretty shocking.
“I think the fact he wasn’t able to compete at a really high level affected him quite badly. We shared the same physio and he never quite recovered from it. I’m really sorry to hear this news.”
The court heard former Olympic hopeful Mhura, 29, had been asked to recover money on behalf of a Londoner called Saunders.
Advocate depute Andrew Brown QC, prosecuting, said Mr Saunders thought Mr Cerdan had ripped him off and asked Mhura to help recover the money, running into tens of thousands of pounds.
Mr Brown said Mr Cerdan denied this debt but accepted he owed Mhura £3000 from a business venture organising “party nights”. He said he had taken £2000 to Mhura’s house as part payment.
The court heard how Mr Cerdan travelled from London to Edinburgh by train and was taken to Kirknewton by two friends of Mhura on the evening of Sunday, January 20.
In the house in Kaimes Crescent they began talking about Mr Saunders’ allegedly missing money before Mhura forced him face down on the bed, handcuffing his wrists behind his back and tied his legs with gaffer tape.
Mocking Mhura then used Mr Cerdan’s phone to send a text: “I would phone you but I’m a little bit tied up right now.”
Defence QC Jim Keegan said Mhura insisted that he had no intention of actually harming Mr Cerdan.