Jon Jones Pays Fine, Gets License Back in California to Clear the Way for UFC 232
Jon Jones paid a hefty $205,000 fine but now he’s re-licensed in the state of California, which was the final hurdle to jump before he could return at UFC 232 on Dec. 29 in Las Vegas.
When Jones tested positive for Turinabol, an anabolic steroid, following his last fight against Daniel Cormier in California, the commission there overturned his win to a no contest and revoked his license rather than suspend him.
Jones was ultimately handed a 15-month reduced sentence by USADA (United States Anti-Doping Agency) but he still had to get his license back in California now that his UFC doping case had been closed.
On Tuesday, Jones appeared during a meeting where California State Athletic Commission executive director Andy Foster made an impassioned plea about the former light heavyweight champion getting his license back.
“I do not think Mr. Jones is intentionally a doper,” Foster said at the hearing. “I just don’t believe it. If he is he’s the worst doper in combat sports. He fails the one test he knows is coming. I’ve said my peace. My recommendation to this commission if he turns in his fine is that Mr. Jones be allowed granted a temporary license, be removed from the suspension list so that he can make a living and go compete in the state of Nevada.”
As part of his punishment from the California commission, Jones had to pay a $205,000 fine and he will also have to complete community service as well. Jones suggested working with youth groups at the Gracie-Barra academies in Anaheim and Albuquerque, New Mexico with one of the commissioners suggesting possible work at another gym as well.
The commission also suggested that Jones volunteer to additional drug testing for the next three to four months as conducted by VADA (Voluntary Anti-Doping Agency) to further exonerate his name from being associated with cheating.
The commission even agreed to reimburse Jones out of his own fine to help pay for it, assuming Jones goes through with the voluntary drug testing.
Jones’ attorney Howard Jacobs said they would be open to the idea after reviewing VADA’s processes and procedures but again whether or not he submits to the drug testing will have no bearing on his license in California.
As of now, Jones is officially cleared and ready to make his return to action at UFC 232 where he’ll battle Alexander Gustafsson to crown a new light heavyweight champion.