In a victory for everyone who thinks the government has no right to intrude on our beloved unregulated warehouse matches, prosecutors in Fort Pierce, Fla., have dropped third-degree felony charges against UFC lightweight contender Din Thomas. As reported here a month ago, Thomas was arrested for allegedly running un-sanctioned MMA bouts at his gym, violating a Florida statute that governs “prohibited competitions.” According to the original article in the Palm Beach Post:
[Assistant State Attorney Jeff] Hendricks said several things factored into the decision, including an exception to the “prohibited competitions” statute for training. He said if the fighter or participants were students of Thomas’ school, and the purpose of the school is to teach martial arts, then they meet the exception to the law. He said Thomas’ attorney would have likely won a motion to dismiss the case by filing an affidavit stating that all the participants of the match that law enforcement officers observed on Oct. 19 were students of the school where Thomas teaches, American Top Team. Hendricks also said it was revealed after Thomas’ arrest that the school didn’t profit from the match because all the money collected was raffled* off.
* There was still no word on who won the raffle.