Carl Frampton has said a social media death threat that warned he and his family would be murdered was “probably a young lad being stupid”.
The boxer told BBC Radio Ulster’s Talkback programme that the threat had not been reported to the PSNI.
Christine Frampton, Carl’s wife, revealed the threat on Twitter on Wednesday.
It warned that the family, including two children, would be “murdered by the UVF”.
She said: “Lovely message I got on Facebook. How do I find out who this person is because the profile seems to have disappeared?”
The boxer said that while you have to “take these things seriously”, he believed it was “some idiot”.
“I just really think it was some clown, probably young, sitting in his mum’s front box room thinking he’s a hard man.
“A lot of the time people think they can say what they want on social media, which I don’t think should be the case, but it’s not a serious death threat I don’t think.”
He said they had decided not to go to the police but that “people don’t have the right to make these sort of statements just because they’re on social media”.
“Just because it’s social media, you can’t talk about people’s kids and talk about murdering someone’s family. It’s just not on.
“We did take it seriously, it was annoying, but we didn’t go to the cops because we know, both me and Christine, that it was just some idiot.
“I retweeted it and then I took the retweet down because I hoped that someone would know who this guy was and maybe have a word with him and just say, ‘wise up, you can’t be doing this sort of stuff’.”
It’s not the first time Frampton has cooled a potentially heated social media situation.
Earlier this month, the Tiger Bay boxer replied to a Twitter user who said he would “never again” support him after he was pictured in an Antrim gaelic games jersey.
Frampton tweeted a picture of a personalised hurling stick and the words: “Hey boy, anymore talk like that and you’ll get this around the coupon.”
The boxer said: “I’m pretty sure if you look through his Twitter feed he’s just a troll looking for a reaction off people, and I gave it to him and I probably shouldn’t have.
“But it was just a bit of fun.”
He told BBC Talkback that despite the presence of “keyboard warriors” he had been “pretty lucky” on social media.
“I don’t get a lot of negative comments, most people are pretty positive towards me.
“Obviously you get the odd one, but I look at some other boxers and some other sports stars and what people are saying to them and some of it is pretty disgraceful.
“But, again, these people who are giving the abuse are probably the same people who would approach you for a photograph or an autograph on the street.”
Meanwhile, Frampton, who suffered his first professional boxing defeat in his last fight, said his next bout will be announced “very, very soon” and will take place in Belfast.
“I’m pleased and satisfied with it. It’s not going to be Leo Santa Cruz, but my next fight will be a good fight and one that will be interesting.”