MOSCOW, September 11—, Andrey Vasilchin. This year poses the most difficult test for the French mixed martial arts (MMA) fighter Hussein Askhabov. In February, an athlete of Chechen origin made an unsuccessful debut in the Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC). And already the day before it became known that a 28-year-old native of Grozny and his twin brother Hasan were arrested a week ago in Phuket (Thailand) in connection with the kidnapping, torture and extortion of money from an Italian citizen.
As the Sportskeeda portal reports with reference to The Phuket News, an Italian citizen was beaten in his own home in the resort of Cherng Thalay. The victim stated that he was tied up, gagged and blindfolded. During the robbery, items worth $340,000 were taken. Among the stolen items are Rolex and Patek Philippe watches, Apple brand equipment, and expensive sunglasses. The criminals also took 40 thousand euros in cash and a debit card found at the villa.
It is noted that the Askhabov brothers, who knew the Italian, were not actually present at the crime scene, but they are suspected of organizing an attack plan by a group of three attackers. The latter, immigrants from Kazakhstan, flew out of Thailand and managed to hide in their homeland with a transfer to the UAE.
As for his MMA career, Askhabov’s record is 23 victories and one defeat, which he suffered in his debut fight in February 2023 of the year. As part of the preliminary card of UFC Vegas 69, the featherweight representing France lost to American Jamal Emmers by unanimous decision.
In October, Askhabov is scheduled to share the cage with Daniel Pineda from the United States. However, judging by the events developing in Thailand, it can be assumed that not only the imminent return of “Lion” to the octagon is in question, but also the continuation of cooperation with Dana White’s league.
UPD: Askhabov’s fight is canceled The official UFC statement was released on Tuesday:
"UFC is aware of the recent arrest and charges against Khusein Askhabov. The organization continues to gather additional information about this incident. The UFC will provide an opportunity to complete the legal process before making any further announcements, but the fight scheduled for October 7 has been cancelled.”