Alexander Shlemenko has been handed a hefty suspension. | Photo: Dave Mandel/Sherdog.com
The California State Athletic Commission came down hard on Alexander Shlemenko on Tuesday, suspending the former Bellator MMA middleweight champion for three years for failing a drug test at Bellator 133.
In addition, Shlemenko was fined $10,000 and his victory against Melvin Manhoef was changed to a no contest. The 31-year-old Russian had an elevated testosterone-to-epitestosterone ratio of 50:1 in relation to the Feb. 13 bout; the legal T/E limit in California is 4:1. Shlemenko also tested positive for the anabolic steroid oxandrolone.
Shlemenko, who was present to appeal the ruling along with his attorney, Howard Jacobs, denied taking performance enhancing drugs. However, the CSAC voted unanimously to pass the motion to suspend Shlemenko.
Shlemenko knocked Manhoef out with a spinning back-fist 1:25 into the second round of their headlining encounter at Bellator 133, which took place at the Save Mart Center in Fresno, Calif. Manhoef was issued a mandatory 180-day suspension by the CSAC following the defeat.