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Chael Sonnen cuts deal in response to federal money laundering charge

It looks as though Anderson Silva’s anticipated rematch against Chael Sonnen won’t take place anytime soon regardless of how the current middleweight champ fares against Vitor Belfort next month at UFC 126. In fact, it may never go down at all.

According to an official statement from the U.S. District Attorney’s office, Sonnen plead guilty earlier today in an Oregon court on a charge of money laundering related to his side business as a real estate broker. Specifically, the outspoken 185-pounder submitted false documents relating to repairs to a business he knew were not actually going to be made.

Though the outspoken Sonnen risked a sentence of up to 20 years in prison and a $500,000 fine, it is believed he will cooperate with the investigation and offer testimony as a witness against others in order to reduce his sentence. As part of his plea, Sonnen gave up his Real Estate License and paid a $10,000 fine. He is also expected to receive at least two years of probation once things are finalized.

The news is another item in a string of misfortune for Sonnen. After dominating Silva throughout the bulk of their match-up in August at UFC 117, then being submitted in the final few minutes of the fight, he was subsequently suspended for a year after admitting to testosterone use (a ruling later reduced to six months).

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