UFC heavyweight Ben Sosoli could be in Australian jail for up to 22 months after punching a man outside a Melbourne bar in September 2019.
According to the Australian Associated Press, Sosoli was working at Jacksons Lounge Bar as a bouncer when he punched a man in the jaw after the patron twice snuck in to the establishment upon being refused entry for being too intoxicated. The man suffered a broken jaw as a result and was forced to undergo surgery.
Sosoli told police that the man had been “threatening to f—k him up” prior to the incident. However, Judge Gavan Meredith on Monday did not excuse the fighter for his actions.
"You are expected not to respond to provocation in the way you did,” Meredith said.
Sosoli pleaded guilty to recklessly causing serious injury and must serve 11 months of his 22-month sentence before he is eligible for parole.
Sosoli competed on Season 3 of Dana White’s Contender Series before making his Octagon debut against Greg Hardy at UFC on ESPN 6. Hardy initially won a unanimous decision but the result was changed to a no contest when it was determined the former NFL star used an inhaler between rounds without commission approval.
The 30-year-old Australian returned at UFC Fight Night 168, where he suffered a first-round TKO defeat against Marcos Rogerio de Lima on Feb. 23. According to the report, Sosoli has since been released from his UFC contract.
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