UFC fighter Jake Shields banned for six months after using prohibited substance

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TORONTO - UFC fighter Jake Shields says he has been banned for six months for taking a prohibited substance.

"Prior to my professional bout at UFC 150 in Denver, Colorado, I used a substance prohibited by Colorado Boxing Commission rules," the 33-year-old American said Friday in a statement released by his management group.

"This was a mistake that I fully regret. I have shared this issue with my family and the UFC and I have apologized to them and now I also apologize to you, the fans. I promise this will never occur again in my fighting career.

"I accept the (Colorado) Boxing Commission's decision for a six-month suspension, which will expire in February. I ask that you accept my apology. I will be back fighting soon, and hope that the fans of MMA will support me until that time."

The former Strikeforce champion won a unanimous decision over middleweight Ed (Short Fuse) Herman on the Aug. 11 card at the Pepsi Centre.

A spokeswoman for Shields' Authentic Sports Management said she was not at liberty to release anything else.

A phone message to Josef Mason, Colorado's Office of Boxing director, was not immediately returned.

Shields (28-6-1) lost a five-round decision to welterweight champion Georges St-Pierre at UFC 139 in Toronto in April 2011.

Organizations: Colorado Boxing Commission, Pepsi Centre, Office of Boxing UFC 139

Geographic location: Denver, Colorado, TORONTO

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