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WWE Star Chris Jericho

Suspended for

Desecrating Brazilian Flag

5/25/2012 5:30 AM PDT BY TMZ STAFF
EXCLUSIVE

0524_chris_jericho_01
A WWE event in Brazil came to a screeching halt Thursday evening ... when local law enforcement stopped a live match and threatened to arrest Chris Jericho for desecrating the Brazilian flag.

It all went down during a match between Jericho and C.M. Punk -- who was proudly waving the flag in the ring. Jericho took the flag away, crumpled it up and kicked the flag out of the ring ... and that's when police stepped in and put a stop to the event.

052512_chris_jericho_launch
We're told Jericho was informed that desecrating the national flag is a crime in Brazil ... punishable by incarceration.

Cops gave Jericho an option -- apologize to the arena ... or go to jail. Chris chose the former ...  grabbing the mic and telling the crowd he immediately regretted his actions. Cops allowed the event to continue.

Sources connected to the WWE tell TMZ ... the flag stunt was NOT planned or approved by WWE officials.

The WWE has just released an official statement saying, "Chris Jericho has been suspended indefinitely  due to an irresponsible act of denigrating the Brazilian flag at a WWE event in Sao Paulo on May 24. The WWE has apologized to the citizens and the government of Brazil for this incident."

update_bar
1:57 PM PDT -- The WWE has just amended its suspension of Jericho. Jericho is now suspended for 30 days.

6:34 AM PDT --
Jericho has tweeted about the incident ... saying, " Just for the record I love Brazil and wish we could've spent more time here. Beautiful country!"

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152 COMMENTS

No Avatar
61.

Northohio    

He didn't know it was a crime in Brazil because it's not one here. However, he immediately apologized so what's the big deal. I tend to believe it was part of the show but if not, Jericho should tell the WWE to shove the flag up their ass.

850 days ago
62.

SYLVIA    

That's why you americans are hated all over the world. Do you really think you're the best, don't you? What I read here about Brazil and Brazilians made me sick. Who the hell you think you are? We are still a poor country, with many, many problems, but we are also bringing a lot of money to your battered economy (see how Florida government wants our money)and how Obama and Hillary are making easy the trips from Brazil to the US. Shame on you, Americans! It is time to understand that your are not alone in the world!

850 days ago
63.

Kaleb    

Jericho did nothing wrong. He plays the role of a heel. He's expected to do stuff like this. That's why we love heels. If anyone's going to be suspended it should be Punk. He brought the flag. Many times we've had people such as Iron Sheik do stuff to our flag. We say nothing about it, and find it funny. Reasons like this are one of the very many I've stopped watching wrestling in the past few months. Alberto Del Rio is another reason. I change the channel when he comes on. I don't love to hate him. I just outright loath him.

850 days ago
64.

Italo    

I'm brazilian and I'm one of the few that really understand pro wrestling. I was there in the show last night.
What can I say, this move was to gain the heat of the crowd, because Punk was holding proudly our country flag.
To me in pro wrestling this is normal, but Brazil doesn't have the same wrestling culture of USA and Canada for example.
The problem is the culture, here our national passion is Soccer and we are the greatest in this sport.
I don't blame Jericho for what he did, I was expecting that after the match CM Punk would take back the flag and "save the night".
This was exactly what happened. So the suspension is understandable for market reasons. WWE needs to connect with Latin America.

850 days ago
65.

mick'o    

ok is that it im Brazilian & i didnt get piss about that hes a bad guy thats what he needs to do DAMN

850 days ago
66.

Callie    

Well. If this was a storyline idea-it certainly wasn't a very good one. I'm not taking sides or anything-BUT-I can't sit here and say that what Jericho did was right,it's not okay to destroy other peoples' property and be allowed to get away with it and I have an uncle,aunt,and 2 cousins that lived in BRAZILIA the capitol of Brazil for 22 years whom just moved to the states not too long ago and out of respect for them and the life they left behind to move back to the states after so very long-I can't say that what Jericho did was okay. We all know,that when someone does something like that here-we take great offense and punishment is handed down-it should be the same for Brazil,this is their homeland-and they do not like it when someone desecrates it for whatever reason and it's disrespectful to them and if this was WWE'S idea-THEY MADE A VERY STUPID MISTAKE,hopefully one they will learn from.
If it wasn't a storyline-and Jericho did this on purpose to piss people off-he did a good job of it and he got exactly what he deserved,and he's been acting out as of late-doing some very stupid stuff and he needs to suffer the consequences of his actions-it's called:BEING A MAN AND A HUMAN BEING AND TAKING RESPONSIBILITY FOR YOUR ACTIONS and stop being such a bully period.

850 days ago
67.

VIDGMER    

Why the USA of people okay for Middle East and South America burned our USA flag. IF US of American people burn their flag, they would kill one of them who are american for that. Like Middle East gangs killed some of our U.S. Troops who burned koan book. Not Fair!

850 days ago
68.

ERIC     

What the hell? Is this for real? It's probably just a stunt to keep him off air for a while. Come on pple. Think about it.

850 days ago
69.

Italo    

I'm brazilian and I'm one of the few that really understood wrestling. I was there in the show last night.
What can I say, this move was to gain the heat of the crowd, because Punk was holding proudly our country flag.
To me in pro wrestling this is normal, but Brazil doesn't have the same wrestling culture of USA and Canada for example.
The problem is the culture, here our national passion is Soccer and we are the greatest in this sport.
I don't blame Jericho for what he did, I was expecting that after the match CM Punk would take back the flag and "save the night".
This was exactly what happened. So the suspension is understandable for market reasons. WWE needs to connect with Latin America.

850 days ago
70.

jvegas1992    

REMEMBER, over a year ago someone in the WWE was FIRED for letting a wrestler interrupt the U.S. national anthem at a live show. So, as far as this being a storyline is concerned, can't say I 100% buy that.

850 days ago
71.

bobbyphenom    

jericho is taking the bullet for the wwe, that was definitely in the script... he's not suspended he's on paid vacation as a thank u for taking the blame from the wwe!

850 days ago
72.

M1ZF1T69    

he was just trying to get cheap heat. he is a heel.

850 days ago
73.

GIGI    

what a disrespectful idiot....he should def be suspended for disrespecting people in their own house...IDIOT!!

850 days ago
74.

Andre R.    

Yeah, and during the Gulf War in 1991 at WM VII, Hogan tore the Iraqi flag in half after Sgt. Slaughter covered him with it. And NOBODY cared. But in this case I understand why there is controversy. And as it was explained, this IS a work and Jericho needed some time off. Therefore, they cooked up this angle so he could be off WWE TV for a few months. But however said that EVERY flag should be respected and not ever desecrated, I totally agree with that. It's just common sense, really. Which is severly lacking in the world today!

850 days ago
75.

LeonAddison1974    

This is entertainment, the wrestlers are supposed to do and say shocking things, getting in trouble for this crap is BullSh*t, Chris is a star who does not need this crap..

850 days ago
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