Tuesday was a bad day for former UFC light-heavyweight champion Jon ‘Bones’ Jones.
During a disciplinary hearing with the California State Athletic Commission (CSAC), the former UFC world champion was slapped with a $205,000 fine and had his licence to fight in California revoked.
This is as a result of his failed pre-fight drug test before his stoppage victory over Daniel Cormier at UFC 214 last July. Jones tested positive for the banned steroid Turinabol, a drug he said he never knowingly ingested.
After a lengthy hearing in California, the panel heard Jones had been “super careful” about his preparations for the Cormier bout.
“This situation is, like, really, really crappy,” Jones told the panel.
“I don’t understand how any of this happened and how it got in my system.
“Imagine being me. I have no clue how this happened. I’m just trying to figure it out just like everybody else.”
Back in 2016 Jones was given a one year ban after testing positive for banned substances clomiphene and letrozol, Jones claimed they must have been in a tainted sexual enhancement product.
Despite being adamant of his innocence this time around, Jones made a series of shock admissions under questioning, as he admitted that he’d never taken the mandatory online anti-doping tutorial courses set up by the US Anti-Doping Agency (USADA), revealing his management took the courses and forged his signature to claim that he had.
Jones was also criticised for failing to fully disclose his supplement use on USADA declaration forms completed during mandatory drug testing.
If found guilty again by USADA, who independently manage the UFC’s anti-doping policy, Jones could face a suspension of up to four years due to it being a second offence. If any aggravating factors are discovered, that sentence could be extend even further.
The CSAC made clear they would await the results of USADA’s ruling before judging whether Jones would be cleared to fight in their state again.
The panel unanimously agreed to uphold the recommendations of CSAC’s Andy Foster, who actually said he believed Jones was telling the truth by saying he didn’t intentionally take the banned substance in question.
Foster nonetheless tabled a punishment of a $205,000 fine (40% of his fight purse + $5,000). Now, all eyes will turn to USADA who will sit down with the fighter later this year and decide on the UFC star’s future and whether the American will be allowed to fight in the octagon any time soon.