The International Boxing Association (AIBA) has threatened to file a lawsuit against the International Olympic Committee (IOC) if it is stripped of its recognition as the Olympic governing body for the sport later this month.
AIBA Interim President Mohamed Moustahsane outlined the plan to sue the IOC in a letter sent to members of world governing body's Executive Committee.
In the letter, seen by insidethegames, Moustahsane calls for an Extraordinary Executive Committee meeting to vote on "AIBA preparing a lawsuit to go forward on May 23 should the IOC decision regarding AIBA not be favourable".
The Moroccan, who took over from Gafur Rakhimov following the Uzbek's decision to step aside as AIBA President in March, also called for a vote on "sending a brief of complaint to the IOC Ethics Commission against some IOC members".
The group leading the IOC inquiry into AIBA, launched in December, is due to present its final report to the Executive Board at its next meeting in Lausanne on May 22.
It is believed the IOC is likely to sanction AIBA, with a removal of its recognition among the options.
This would mean AIBA would not be able to organise the boxing tournament at next year's Olympic Games in Tokyo or the qualification system.
The letter from Moustahsane, which insidethegames understands has been seen by senior members of the IOC administration, came after IOC President Thomas Bach sent his strongest signal yet that AIBA could be stripped of its recognition.
Speaking at the Australian Olympic Committee's Annual General Meeting in Sydney, Bach admitted an organisation other than AIBA could run the boxing competition at Tokyo 2020.
Shortly after the letter was distributed to Executive Committee members, Moustahsane sent a follow-up email urging them to "ignore the content of the letter sent to you previously".
He claimed the Extraordinary Executive Committee meeting, scheduled for May 18 in Lausanne, would inform members "regarding the current situation and to discuss the possibilities to solve them according to the situation" and that "no other points" would be discussed.
insidethegames understands, however, that the lawsuit will still be debated and then voted on at the meeting in the Olympic capital.
It marks a dramatic escalation of the dispute between the IOC and AIBA since the former launched the investigation, mainly triggered by the election of Rakhimov - who remains on a United States Treasury Department sanctions list as "one of Uzbekistan's leading criminals - as President but also centred on AIBA's finances, governance and refereeing and judging.
The lawsuit does not come as a surprise as AIBA members have privately vowed to fight any IOC sanctions.
It is likely the IOC has taken legal advice when conducting the inquiry to ensure it stands up to any challenge from AIBA at the Court of Arbitration for Sport.
AIBA is hopeful Rakhimov stepping aside, coupled with an offer from influential Russian Executive Committee member Umar Kremlev to write off the organisation's significant debts, will count in its favour when the IOC delivers its verdict.
The IOC has stressed its problems with AIBA go far deeper than Rakhimov, however.
Recent developments, including a split between the European Boxing Confederation and AIBA after the continental body set up a working group and said it should be given direct access to the IOC to lobby to save the sport's future, could also be considered by the Inquiry Committee before it hands its report to the Executive Board.
insidethegames has contacted AIBA for comment.