Former UFC featherweight Diego Brandao was suspended for nine months and fined 30 percent of his purse by the Nevada Athletic Commission on Wednesday for a positive marijuana test at UFC 195.
Brandao’s suspension is retroactive to the date of the event, which took place on Jan. 2 at the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas. “The Ultimate Fighter 14” winner earned $36,000 for his third-round submission loss to Brian Ortega, so his fine will amount to approximately $10,800.
Brandao was not present at Wednesday’s NAC hearing. The suspension is in line with the one handed down by USADA last week, which Brandao accepted. The Brazilian fighter tested positive for Carboxy-THC, a metabolite of marijuana and/or hashish in a sample taken by USADA during an in-competition drug test at UFC 195. The USADA sanction can be reduced by one month if Brandao completes an approved anti-doping program.
NAC Executive Director Bob Bennett recommended a 12-month suspension for Brandao due to the fighter’s absence, but the commission ultimately elected to stay with the initially recommended nine-month punishment.
Brandao was released by the UFC for an incident last month in which he allegedly hit an Albuquerque, N.M., strip club employee in the face with a gun. He was arrested on three felony charges of aggravated assault with a deadly weapon and one charge of aggravated battery with a deadly weapon for the altercation. He was later released on $15,000 bond; the Bernalillo County District Attorney’s office has yet to decide if it will pursue the case against the Jackson-Wink MMA representative.