UFC president Dana White named as victim in $200,000 sex-tape extortion lawsuit

UFC president Dana White was named in a lawsuit on Friday as the alleged victim in a $200,000 sex-tape extortion case. 

White’s name was included, along with the UFC, in a suit filed in Clark County District Court by Ernesto Joshua Ramos, according to the Las Vegas Review-Journal. The 42-year-old Ramos, a real estate agent and personal trainer, pleaded guilty in federal court for extortion and served a 366-day prison sentence. Ramos accused White in his suit of breaking an April 2016 deal which would have paid him $450,000 for not disclosing White’s name publicly following the criminal case. 

“I just found out that a bulls— lawsuit was filed against me yesterday,” White said in a statement Saturday given to the Review-Journal. “This guy went to federal prison for trying to extort me over five years ago. Now he’s hired a lawyer who is also a convicted felon, and he’s trying to extort me again for $10 million. He got no money from me last time and he won’t be getting any money from me this time. I look forward to the court dismissing this quickly so I can get rid of these scumbags forever.”

Ramos, who claimed in the suit he never demanded money, also alleged White’s lawyers of giving the FBI derogatory information about him to in order to spark an investigation for extortion charges. 

White’s name was originally withheld from the 2015 criminal case after a federal magistrate judge signed a protective order prohibiting disclosure of his name, initials or company in any public filings. Identified simply as “unnamed businessman,” White was alleged by prosecutors to have taken part in an overseas rendezvous with an adult nightclub dancer in Brazil at a UFC event. 

The dancer, Ramos’ live-in girlfriend, allegedly taped herself and White having sex in their hotel room using a cellphone, the civil complaint read. White, who was married, had been seeing the stripper at the club for months and paying her large sums of money to dance for him, per the suit. 

Ramos was arrested in January 2015 in Las Vegas by FBI agents and charged with trying to extort $200,000 from White. The suit, filed by attorney Ian Christopherson, also claims Ramos was offered money by White and his lawyers during the criminal case to get him to plead guilty. Once Ramos did so in court, White’s team never came through with any money, per the suit. Ramos’ attempt to withdraw his guilty plea in June 2016 was denied in a hearing by U.S. District Judge Gloria Navarro and later upheld in a federal appeal. 

“The actions of White were fraudulent, oppressive and designed to encourage Ramos to plead guilty so he could negotiate a substantial settlement, which would prevent the disclosure of his actions at trial for the personal benefit of White and his related businesses and interest,” the suit alleged. 

Ramos was indicted in September 2015 by a federal grand jury and accused of demanding $200,000 from White by threatening him with text messages and cellphone calls saying he would make the sex tapes public. Ramos, who is now a free man, also agreed to turn over any remaining sex tapes as part of his government plea deal and confirmed no others exist. 

Christopherson was convicted of tax evasion in 2012 and later suspended from practicing law, but the Nevada Supreme Court reinstated his license in July 2018.

The dancer, whose name was not revealed in court documents, was never charged. Over a two-year period, White allegedly tipped her around $200,000 total and usually $10,000 per visit for her to dance and have sex with him in the adult nightclub, per the complaint.