January 04, 2011
Following his guilty plea in a mortgage fraud case, UFC middleweight Chael Sonnen has been suspended by the UFC, and his bout with Yoshihiro Akiyama is on hold. TMZ reported that Dana White said that Sonnen's contract is "frozen."
"Chael Sonnen has gone through a lot in the last few months and we think it's important for him to focus on getting his personal life together before focusing on his career in the UFC." White adds, "I spoke with Chael earlier today and he agrees that setting priorities in his life is the best thing for him right now. I sincerely hope Chael is able to straighten out his personal life."
Sonnen is expected to receive two years probation and be required to pay a $10,000 fine. He is far from the first UFC fighter to run afoul of the law while on the promotion's payroll.
Quinton "Rampage" Jackson, the one-time light heavyweight champ, plead guilty last January to going on a reckless driving spree in southern California. Later in 2009, he coached on "The Ultimate Fighter" and starred in a remake of "The A-Team."
Josh Neer fought on Ultimate Fight Night 17 just over a month after his second DUI arrest, but wasn't cut from the UFC until he had two losses in a row. Chris Leben, who fought last weekend at UFC 125, was arrested for a DUI in October 2010 and a probation violation in April 2008.
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