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MMA veteran Marlon Sandro allegedly attacked, choked out fiancee

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Marlon Sandro is a former Sengoku champion and two-time Bellator GP finalist.
Guilherme Cruz, MMA Fighting

Brazilian MMA fighter Marlon Sandro has been accused of domestic violence.

The 37-fight veteran, a former Sengoku featherweight champion who also competed under the Bellator banner, allegedly injured his fiancee Tayssa Wuensche on Thursday morning in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.

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Wuensche’s friends posted on social media that Sandro attacked her at the Sao Salvador square in Catete, Rio de Janeiro. According to one of Wuensche's friends, Sandro grabbed Wuensche while she attempted to enter a taxi, throwing her on the ground and injuring her arm and knee. Sandro choked Wuensche out with his hands in the middle of the street, she said, and hit her again multiple times after she woke up. Wuensche confirmed her friend's account of the incident in an interview to Combate.

The alleged incident happened around 4 a.m. local time. Wuensche, 31, told MMA Fighting she won't press charges against Sandro.

"What I plan on doing from now on is to find my peace. To be in peace,” Wuensche told MMA Fighting. "This episode will be in the past and I may get back up again and be well. I died inside right now. But I have no intentions of filing charges in the police station because we had a great family, I’m crazy for his kids, and I only think about him — even though he didn’t think of his kids when he did this, I think about them now. Of course that I don’t want any trouble for him, I simply want distance now."

Sandro deleted his Instagram account after the news broke and hasn’t responded to multiple requests for comment from MMA Fighting.

Sandro, 40, was one of the most important names coming out of Nova Uniao for more than a decade and fought for the last time in August, defeating Diego Huerto in the main event of Shooto Brazil 74 in Rio de Janeiro.

Nova Uniao leader Andre Pederneiras released a statement to Combate announcing that Sandro is no longer part of the team.

"I was caught by surprise on Thursday night with these photos online," Pederneiras said. "We haven’t been able to get in touch with Marlon yet, but given the severity of the facts, Nova Uniao announces that Marlon Sandro is no longer part of the team."

Wuensche was recently seen during UFC 218 fight week earlier this month, helping UFC star Jose Aldo with translations prior to his title fight with Max Holloway in Detroit. Sandro has cornered Aldo in some of his biggest fights in the UFC.

"What I’m feeling right now is the biggest disappointing and frustrating of my life,” Wuensche said. "I feel pain, not only physical, but I feel destroyed inside. Of course that I would never expect this from him. He’s the man that I was going to get married with. We were living together for a while now, it was a beautiful family. I loved his kids, and I never expected this from him, of course. I never thought it would get this far, so I’m very disappointed.

"I’m also a bit scared because of how big this story has become because I’m not the one who (revealed this). My friends were outraged after seeing me like this and started to post on social media. I also didn’t expect to get to this. I’m very embarrassed. I feel very embarrassed, even though I know I have no fault. But it’s embarrassing to be exposed like this. I’m not a public person, I work in a private company, I’m a publicist, and I have nothing to do with the fight world or anything like that. He’s the one with a public life, so this scares me a lot. I never imagined myself in this position."