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BJ Penn: I fought the law - and the law won

UFC lightweight contender BJ Penn was fined $2,000 and sentenced to one year of probation today for striking a police officer during a Hawaiian bar brawl back in 2005, according to Hawaii's own Honolulu Advertiser.

"The Prodigy" pleaded no-contest to the charges and struck a deal with prosecutors to avoid jail time. Penn, however, must still perform 50 hours of community service and submit to random drug testing.

The good news is that he's permitted to participate in his upcoming UFC title match against Joe Stevenson at UFC 80: "Rapid Fire" in Newcastle, England, on January 19.

From Penn:

I want to thank the fans for the support and for sticking by me through thick and thin. It's time to move on with my life and focus on my career. I'm glad it's done.

Like most bar fights, details about the actual incident are a bit fuzzy. But the fact that Penn willingly took a plea deal coupled with the no-contact order for him and the officer involved leads me to believe that things got pretty heated between the two.

The original report alleges that Penn blindsided the policeman and fled the scene, only to be chased down on foot and tackled by the same officer.

No confirmation on whether Penn pulled guard or was captured because of a lack of cardio.

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