Former champion Jon Jones officially reinstated to the UFC
Former light heavyweight champion Jon Jones has been reinstated to the UFC, putting an end to his six-month suspension after he was arrested in April for his part in a hit-and-run accident in New Mexico.
UFC officials made the announcement Friday with a date still pending on Jones’ first fight back in the Octagon.
“We’ve made it clear to Jon that this new opportunity to compete in UFC is a privilege and not a right, and that there are significant expectations we have regarding his conduct moving forward," UFC Chairman and CEO Lorenzo Fertitta said. “We’re happy to read and see reports that he has embraced the terms of his plea agreement and is using this experience to grow and develop as a person.”
Jones was placed on an indefinite suspension after being arrested in connection with the accident. He was then stripped of his light heavyweight title as part of the punishment handed down by the UFC.
Daniel Cormier would eventually win and defend the title in Jones’ absence as the former champion dealt with legal issues surrounding his case.
Jones appeared before a judge in New Mexico on Sept. 29 and pleaded guilty to one charge before being sentenced to 18 months probation as well as community service.
The law firm of Campbell and Williams was then retained to investigate the plea agreement before Jones was officially cleared on Friday.
“I am thankful to be able to do what I love once again and I look forward to proving myself as a champion in and outside of the Octagon,” Jones said in a statement.
Following his reinstatement by the UFC, Jones took to Facebook.
"I am grateful for the opportunity to resume my career and I am excited to show how much I’ve grown as a person outside of the Octagon. It took me losing almost everything I had worked for to realize how much I had," Jones said.
"I am blessed and humbled by the continued support of the MMA community and I can’t thank my fans enough for their unwavering support through my ups and downs. This marks the beginning of a new chapter in my life and my career and let me assure you, the best is yet to come."
Jones has been promised a title shot when he comes back to the promotion, so in all likelihood he will face Cormier with the belt on the line as soon as the UFC can make the fight official with a date and location for the championship bout.