UFC Fighter Chael Sonnen Pleads Guilty to Federal Money Laundering Charge


  • Share on Tumblr
  • submit to reddit
Chael Sonnen at Dec. 2 hearing before CSAC

Chael Sonnen at Dec. 2 hearing before CSAC

UFC fighter Chael Sonnen, recently in the spotlight for a suspension related to a failed drug test related to UFC 117, plead guilty to one count of federal money laundering on Monday, according to a press release from the U.S. Attorney’s Office in Oregon.

Sonnen admitted that a financial transaction designed to hide or disguise the ownership and control of proceeds of wire fraud.

The money laundering carries a sentence of up to 20 years in prison and a $500,000 fine.

“The scheme involved Joel Rosabal and Chadwick Amsden, employees of Crown Point Enterprises, dba Lighthouse Financial Group (Lighthouse), a mortgage brokerage service based principally in Vancouver, Washington, with operations in Oregon and elsewhere,” the press release revealed. “Rosabal and Amsden submitted a materially false loan application on the buyer’s behalf… Sonnen acted as the realtor for the transaction. Sonnen submitted a false letter and Sales Agreement Addendum instructing the title company to pay loan proceeds to a plumbing company for repairs to the home. In fact, Sonnen knew and had negotiated with Rosabal that no repairs would be performed on the home and the funds designated to the plumbing company would instead be paid to the buyer as a cash incentive to purchase the home. This agreement was not disclosed to (the mortgage company). Once the loan was funded, the title company paid over $69,000 to the plumbing company and the plumbing company, in turn and at Sonnen’s direction, paid $65,000 to the buyer of the home.”

A report on The Oregonian’s web site said that the government is recommending Sonnen be sentenced to two years of probation. It went on to state that as part of a plea deal, Sonnen agreed to give up his Realtor’s license and pay a $10,000 fine, according to Michelle Holman Kerin, the assistant U.S. attorney handling the case.

Sentencing for the money laundering charge is set for March 28, which would be less than two weeks after UFC 128.

Sonnen had a one-year suspension for the positive drug test result reduced to six months at an appeal before the California State Athletic Commission in December. His suspension is up March 2. He would then be eligible to return to fighting.

MMAJunkie.com is reporting that he will return at UFC 128 to face Yoshihiro Akiyama.

Sonnen had not returned a request for comment prior to the time of publication.

(UPDATED at 8:55 p.m. PT on Jan. 3, 2011 – Added information regarding Sonnen’s plea agreement and the possibility of him fighting at UFC 128.)

view original article >>

Related News

  • 25 days ago
  • 36 views

Yeah, so ... yeah. Things are going from bad to worse for Chael Sonnen, and MMA Fighting has the breaking news: Sonnen, who recently announced his retirement from MMA, was asked to take a blood and urine test on June 5 in Portland, Ore., by the NAC because at the time he was scheduled to fight at UFC 175 on July 5 in Las Vegas. The commission learned earlier this week that Sonnen failed those tests due to the presence of human growth hormone (HGH), recombinant human erythropoietin (EPO), which i more

  • 16 days ago
  • 66 views

Now-retired UFC fighter Chael Sonnen has until July 17 to indicate whether he’ll appeal a disciplinary complaint filed against him by Nevada’s attorney general in the wake of dual drug failures.Filed under: News, UFC more

  • 27 days ago
  • 98 views

Might be time to re-think all those submission losses in MMA... "It won't be easy... He has evolved and that's natural. If you fight MMA, you should know jiu-jitsu. That's a fact. That's why he trains jiu-jitsu like every other MMA fighter. Evolution is a consequence of training, and he has evolved a lot. I will train and fight by the rules, going for the submission on top or from the bottom. Who knows, maybe he'll pull guard. I have to be ready for every situation. If people think that (I will more

  • 25 days ago
  • 37 views

Saturday night, MMAFighting.com broke the news that recently retired UFC competitor Chael Sonnen had failed a second Nevada Athletic Commission drug test. After the UFC Fight Night 44 card in San Antonio, the UFC issued an official statement on the matter, saying it supports the commission's effort to clean up the sport. "We are made aware that a second random test resulted in a positive test result for Chael Sonnen," stated UFC public relations director Dave Sholler. "Chael will have an opportu more

  • 25 days ago
  • 63 views

In the wake of news announcing another failed drug test for three-time title challenger Chael Sonnen, the UFC released a statement largely mirroring its previous responses to high-profile failures.Filed under: News, UFC more

  • 24 days ago
  • 58 views

U.G.L.Y., you ain't got no alibi, you ugly! For those counting, Chael Sonnen had four banned substances in his system when Nevada State Athletic Commission (NSAC) tested him randomly ahead of his ill-fated grudge match against Wanderlei Silva at UFC 175: Anastrozole, human chorionic gonadotropin (hCG), human growth hormone (HGH) and recombinant human erythropoietin (EPO). After testing positive for the first two, Sonnen addressed the results in a seemingly "vulnerable" manner, conducting a rathe more

  • 24 days ago
  • 78 views

The UFC on Saturday issued a statement on Chael Sonnen's second positive drug test, which included performance enhancers EPO and human growth hormone. more

  • 23 days ago
  • 42 views

Fox and the UFC are done with Chael Sonnen after the former title challenger tested positive for banned substances for a second time this year alone. One of the immediate concerns following Saturday night's revelation that Chael Sonnen had failed yet another drug test, this time including "major performance enhancing drugs" such as HGH and EPO, was how Fox and the UFC would handle the situation. It appears that we now know the answer to that question, with Sonnen bounced from both organizations. more

  • 23 days ago
  • 66 views

In light of a second failed drug test, this time for human growth hormone (HGH) and recombinant human erythropoietin (EPO), the UFC and FOX Sports have parted ways with Chael Sonnen. UFC officials announced the termination of Sonnen's broadcasting agreement late Monday night, issuing the following statement. "The UFC and FOX Sports organizations announced today the termination of their respective broadcasting services agreements with analyst Chael Sonnen. This decision comes in light of Sonnen f more