Wanderlei Silva Files Suit Against Nevada Athletic Commission to Overturn Lifetime Ban

January 20, 2015

Last week, Wanderlei Silva filed suit in District Court against the Nevada Athletic Commission seeking to overturn the lifetime ban and fine levied against him in September for evading an out of competition drug test.

On May 24, 2014 a representative of the commission arrived at Silva’s gym to administer a random drug test prior to “The Axe Murderer’s” planned UFC 175 bout against Chael Sonnen on July 5. Silva literally fled out the backdoor.

Wanderlei SilvaSilva appeared before the athletic commission in June, where he admitted evading the representative, while also admitting that he had been on diuretics, which are prohibited substances, at the time that he evaded the test.

Prior to a disciplinary hearing, Silva’s lawyer, Ross Goodman, filed a Motion to Dismiss. In the Motion, Goodman claimed that because Silva did not have an active license in Nevada and no bout agreement had yet been signed, he was not under the commission’s jurisdiction and therefore was not required to submit to random drug testing or disciplinary action for evading the test.

“The NSAC (Nevada Athletic Commission) has never been vested with the authority to direct or order non-licensed persons to submit to a chemical test,” stated Goodman in the Motion to Dismiss. “Consequently, the NSAC lacks jurisdiction to seek disciplinary action against Mr. Silva, and any attempt to do so, clearly exceeds the NSAC’s limited statutory jurisdiction.”

The Motion to Dismiss was denied during a Sept. 24 hearing, and Silva was unanimously banned for life and given a $70,000 fine based on Silva’s estimated purse for the July 5 fight.

SEE ALSO: Wanderlei Silva Banned for Life for Skipping Out on Drug Test

Goodman vowed to appeal the decision at the time, and began that process with the suit in District Court. The suit mirror’s Goodman’s claims in the Motion to Dismiss and asserts that the commission overstepped its jurisdiction by imposing a “career-ending” ban and that the fine was based on an “imaginary purse.” The suit seeks to overturn both the ban and the fine.

The 38-year-old Silva retired from fighting on Sept. 19 just days before the disciplinary hearing. He’s a former PRIDE middleweight champion and holds a number of records in the defunct Japanese fight promotion. While hoping to get the lifetime ban lifted, Silva doesn’t plan to compete again.

“No, no, no. For me, it’s done. I (will) not fight anymore. For anyone,” said Silva during an October interview.

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