MMA Fighter Jackson Faces Defamation Suit


     LOS ANGELES (CN) – A trainer says former Ultimate Fighting light-heavyweight champion Quinton “Rampage” Jackson defamed him by calling him a “crook” in a video interview.
     John Ibarra sued Jackson in Superior Court for defamation, invasion of privacy and infliction of emotional distress.
     In the lawsuit, Ibarra takes issue with an October 2012 interview on the mixed martial arts website www.mmafighting.com in which Jackson allegedly accused Ibarra of fleecing fighters out of their earnings. The fighter’s statements concerned a separate defamation case Ibarra filed in the same court four years ago.
     In the interview, Jackson calls Ibarra a liar and a “fuck’en crook,” and accuses the trainer of stealing from him at training camp, the complaint states.
     Ibarra says Jackson implied that Ibarra had stolen from him and other fighters, and that the trainer was “the reason Jackson was arrested for drunk driving and Jackson’s involuntary confinement in a psychiatric ward.”
     Claiming that Jackson’s claims are false, Ibarra says that other fighters retracted similar statements and that Jackson cited no concrete evidence in support his claims.
     To bolster his lawsuit, Ibarra cites the testimony of Jackson’s financial adviser, Neil Jaramillo, who allegedly denied that Ibarra had taken advantage of the fighter.
     Jackson has also allegedly refused to retract his statements.
     The trainer seeks unspecified damages and costs.
     Jackson has had several brushes with the law. He was charged with assault after a brawl with a teammate on his community college wrestling team in North Carolina. In 2008, he was arrested after driving a pickup into three vehicles and leading police on a high-speed chase.
     Ibarra was Jackson’s trainer and manager from 2005 to 2009.
     The trainer is represented by Samuel Smith of SJS Counsel of Beverly Hills, Calif.

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