Las Vegas - Mexican boxer Julio Cesar Chavez Jr was suspended for nine months and fined $900 000 by the Nevada State Athletic Commission on Thursday for a failed drug test last year.
The 26-year-old Chavez tested positive for marijuana in September after his first professional loss. The fine for Chavez (46-1-1) amounts to 30 percent of his $3m purse for the fight against Sergio Martinez.
The commission could have banned him for one year and penalised him up to 100 percent of his purse.
At a meeting in January, commissioners questioned why Chavez had not yet returned to Nevada for disciplinary action. Attorney Donald Campbell said the former middleweight champion had been stuck in Mexico, unable to obtain a visa.
Chavez's failed test was revealed on September 15, shortly after his dramatic loss to Martinez. Chavez already was fined $20 000 and suspended indefinitely by the WBC, whose belt he lost to Martinez.
In 2009, Chavez tested positive for another banned substance after his fight with Troy Rowland in Las Vegas. He received a seven-month suspension from the Nevada commission.
Chavez was arrested on drunk driving charges last year in Los Angeles, and struggled to make weight for a championship bout last February against Marco Antonio Rubio in San Antonio, Texas.
His promoter, Bob Arum, said in September that he did not regard marijuana as a performance-enhancing drug.