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Lucas Pimenta Says His UWF Paycheck Bounced

February 8, 2013 | Posted by Jeremy Thomas

Lucas Pimenta says that he did not get paid for his tournament wins under the Texas-based Ultimate Warrior Fighting promotion. Pimenta, his manager Wade Hempel and UFC promoter Oscar Enriquez recently spoke with MMAjunkie about the situation and more. Check out the highlights:

Hempel on Pimenta’s financial problems: “Lucas quit his job to train for those three fights, and he borrowed money to pay for his airfare, which he’s trying now to pay back. He had to pay his cornermen for the fights, too. After that, he didn’t have money to pay for Christmas gifts for his family. He’s two months behind on rent. He’s in a bad spot.”

Enriquez on the promotion’s events not turning a profit: “I lost about $260,000 of my money. I lost my retirement. I’m about 50 years old. I retired from construction a year-and-a-half ago. I had an opportunity to get into this. I did, and I lost my entire life savings…I’m not one of these promoters that took off running with the money,” Enriquez said. “I lost my whole entire life savings. I had to go back into the construction business to pay my bills.”

Enriquez on working with the Texas Department of Licensing and Registration to get Pimenta paid: “I’ve been working with the state. I’ve done everything I possibly can. I called the commission and told them I was short on money but had the bonds in place. What’s really frustrating is that the state won’t do s— about it. They work like molasses. Since the bonds remain to the Texas Department of Licensing and Registration, they’re the only ones that can actually cash it in.”

A TDLR rep on the delay: “We have 28 different statutes. We have over 600,000 licensees. So we receive a lot of complaints, and it’s just a matter of time. What happens is the complaint goes to enforcement, and they determine whether or not it’s in our jurisdiction. Then it’s turned over to an investigator, who investigates the facts. Then it’s turned over to a prosecutor, and a prosecutor looks at it and determines what the violation is and how much we’ll be asking for in an administrative penalty. Then a notice of violation goes out, and they have 30 days to respond to that. It’s just a long process. Unfortunately, that’s just the way it is. I would say that he does always have the option – and I know distance is a consideration here – but there’s always small claims court.”

Enriquez on getting out of the business: “The whole reason I got into promotion was because of the fighters. I was trying to bring something to them, and the bad thing is the only money we generated was through ticket sales, and at the end it just wasn’t there.”

Pimenta on his situation: “I just wish I could get that money. I’m not in a very comfortable situation. It’s getting desperate. I’m still trying to train as hard as I can. I want to be the best 170-pounder in the world, and I know I can do it. But right now, I can’t afford to train. I have to get my bills paid. Once that happens, I can actually do what I love.”

Enriquez on Pimenta: “He’s upset, and he should be, without a doubt. I’m upset about it, too. I don’t need anybody to feel sorry for me, but what just knocks my head is there are bonds in place and Lucas can actually get all of his money if the state would just get off their ass and file the paperwork and do what they do so he can get paid.”


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Jeremy Thomas
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