Former Bellator middleweight champion Alexander Shlemenko on Tuesday was handed the most severe penalty that the California State Athletic Commission has ever assessed a mixed martial artist.
The CSAC voted unanimously to suspend Shlemenko for three years and fined him $10,000, according to ESPN.
Shlemenko’s Bellator 133 drug test showed an elevated testosterone-to-epitestosterone ration of 50-to-1, which is indicative of exogenous testosterone use, as well as oxandrolone, a synthetic anabolic steroid.
The Russian knocked out Melvin Manhoef at the Feb. 13 event in Fresno, Calif., but the CSAC overturned the outcome, changing the result to a no contest.
Through his attorney, Howard Jacobs, Shlemenko denied that he ever took any banned substances, and also argued that the test results should be thrown out because the commission failed to collect a “B” sample when doing its collections, thus not affording the possibility of a confirming test.
ESPN reported that experts at the hearing stated that failure to have a second sample did not nullify the veracity of the “A” sample.
The athletic commissioners seemed to agree, showing Shlemenko no leniency.