McGregor may be back fighting in near future as he gets slap on wrist
UFC star Conor McGregor could return to fighting this year after walking free from a New York court.
The 30-year-old was facing up to seven years in prison after being charged with a number of offences over a melee at a UFC event in the city earlier this year.
However, the District Attorney (DA) told Brooklyn Criminal Court yesterday that felony charges against McGregor were being dismissed.
The UFC fighter instead pleaded guilty to disorderly conduct, avoiding jail and a criminal record as a result.
As part of the plea bargain struck between his legal team and the DA, the Dublin man will have to carry out five days' community service and attend up to three anger management classes.
While no community service arrangements have been confirmed, sources say McGregor has expressed a desire to work with children.
"It won't be a case that he'll be picking up rubbish on the side of the road," one source said.
"He has expressed interest in working with young people and the DA may be satisfied with this given that he is a role model to so many kids."
The court heard that McGregor had already paid restitution for the damage caused to a bus during the melee at the Barclays Centre on April 5.
Three orders of protection were also issued against McGregor.
Judge Raymond Rodriguez ruled that he can not come into contact with UFC fighters Raymond Borg and Michael Chiesa as well as Jason Leadbetter until July 25, 2020.
McGregor made a brief statement outside court.
"I just want to say thank you to the DA and the judge for allowing me to move forward. I want to say to my friends, my family and my fans, thank you for your support," he said.
His co-accused, fellow MMA fighter Cian Cowley (25), pleaded guilty to the same charge, and will do three days' community service and take up to three anger management classes.
The outcome of the case means that McGregor could return to fighting within months, with his manager saying he is training and hoping to fight this year.
McGregor has not taken part in a competitive UFC event since defeating Eddie Alvarez in November 2016.
Speaking outside the court, his manager Audie Attar told the Herald: "Conor's going to continue to train and hopefully we'll have some good news soon.
"Right now nothing has been determined in terms of when his return will be.
"Talks have resumed again with the UFC and we'll see where those talks go."
Mr Attar said he could not comment on whether the UFC "will or won't" start internal disciplinary action against McGregor over the fracas, which left two fighters injured.
He also denied that the melee was a publicity stunt, describing it as a "mistake" by McGregor.
"I think people think everything Conor McGregor does is somehow staged. At the end of the day, it was a mistake, he dealt with it, faced it head on and now we got to move on and learn from this incident," he said.
McGregor's lawyer Bruce Mafeo said the outcome of the court case would have no impact on his client's immigration status, and that the community service would be decided by the DA's office.
"This is the same outcome that would have occurred if he had been a non-celebrity," Mr Mafeo said.
Video of the incident at the Barclays Centre shows McGregor shouting "come on you mad rat" as he attacks the bus with his fists.
He can then be seen grabbing a hand trolley as someone shouts at him: "You're going to jail, don't you f**king..."
However, McGregor proceeds to throw the trolley at the bus, smashing the window and injuring Michael Chiesa who is later seen with blood dripping from his forehead.
McGregor is then seen trying to lift a crash barrier and a bin before being restrained.