Former UFC Lightweight Paul Kelly Convicted of Trafficking Heroin

May 17, 2013
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Paul Kelly at UFC 105Former UFC lightweight Paul Kelly faces a lengthy prison sentence after being convicted of running a heroin trafficking ring in Liverpool, England.

Kelly (14-5) rose to prominence in mixed martial arts competing in local British MMA events.  He made his UFC debut at UFC 80 in January 2009 with an undefeated 7-0 record.  He fought nine times in the promotion amassing a 5-4 record.  He was released following a loss to Donald “Cowboy” Cerrone at UFC 126 in February 2011.

Kelly was arrested in May of 2012 as part of a wide-ranging sting operation.

Detective Inspector Mark Kameen, who was the lead on the investigation, stated at the time, “This operation was part of our ongoing crackdown on criminals involved in the illegal drugs trade.”

Judge Mark Brown told jurors they had made the right decision on the “clearest evidence,” and added that he considered Kelly “the boss” in the organization.

After a four-day trial, jurors returned a unanimous guilty verdict and Kelly, along with his best friend Christopher St. John McGirr and childhood friend Paul Rogers were detained and await sentencing next month.

According to the Liverpool Echo, when the verdicts were read, Kelly shouted, “I’ve got two kids!”

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  • El Gvapo

    You have to be pretty basic to be in the public eye (admittedly not to a widespread audience, but known by many nonetheless) and head up a smack-peddling ring. You’re bound to get your some customers telling their customers that they score off a former UFC fighter, and the whispers will start from there.

    Typical dirty scouser though, he should be looking at 15 years at least depending on quantities.

  • Milosc

    Ken Shamrock just keeps getting more right

    This is word for word from his interview about fighter pay vs UFC profits. More (unfortunately) to follow..

    Google: “Ken Shamrock Blasts UFC”

  • coxy

    looks like kelly left it to judges again and lost a discussion lol

    • CombatScienceMMA

      Best comment ever! lol

    • RASTAMAN 420

      I guess you mean decision. BUT THAT WAS FUNNY

  • Jew Jitsu

    do we possibly have another lightening lee? prolly not ever gonna be on that scale but he is starting off on the right track… or wrong track i guess. haha

  • Stevo8800 .

    Nice One Paul, England gangster for sure.

  • Mike mckinney

    So dumb. Going to jail for something that comes from a plant. Shouldn’t even be illegal!

    Sorry, I was channeling myself from when I was 16 and and a pothead…

    • Milosc

      Heroin is a completely different animal and this is at best misleading

  • Joe


  • arkanzaz

    Well on the bright side there wont be any lack of willing BJJ partners in there


    Paul Kelly 5-4 in the UFC, 0-1 in Life!