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Israel Adesanya Pleads Guilty to Drunk Driving Charge in New Zealand

LockerRoom Team
25 September 2023

Israel Adesanya, the former UFC middleweight champion, has reportedly entered a guilty plea for a drunk driving charge in New Zealand. The incident in question occurred three weeks before his recent UFC bout.

According to The New Zealand Herald's report on Sunday, Adesanya pled guilty to a "drink driving" charge related to operating a vehicle in Auckland on August 19. At the time of the incident, Adesanya had registered 87 milligrams of alcohol in his system per 100 milliliters of blood, exceeding the New Zealand legal limit of 50 milligrams per 100 milliliters of blood.

In a statement provided to The New Zealand Herald, Adesanya expressed his regret, saying, "I want to apologize to the community, my family, and my team for the decision I made to get behind the wheel after drinking at dinner. I was pulled over and gave an evidentiary blood test — the reading was 87 milligrams of alcohol per 100 milliliters of blood."

Adesanya continued, "I am disappointed with my decision to drive. It was wrong. I know that people might follow me, and I want them to know I do not think this behavior is acceptable."

According to the report, the maximum penalty for Adesanya's charge could entail up to three months in jail or a fine of $4,500, which is approximately $2,680 USD. Adesanya is scheduled to appear for his sentencing hearing on January 10, 2024.

The 34-year-old Adesanya faced a surprising setback on September 10 when Sean Strickland dominated him over the course of 25 minutes, ultimately capturing the UFC middleweight title in a one-sided bout at UFC 293.

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Having held the UFC middleweight championship twice in his career, Adesanya's recent performance reflects a challenging period, as he has lost two of his last three fights and currently holds a 4-3 record in his past seven octagon appearances. Fans and the MMA community will undoubtedly watch Adesanya's journey closely as he navigates the consequences of his recent legal troubles and seeks to regain his fighting form.

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