Mackenzie Dern found herself entangled in a highly publicized divorce marked by allegations of abuse and a complex legal battle with her ex-husband, pro surfer Wesley Santos.
The relationship between Mackenzie Dern and Santos had been on shaky ground for some time. Despite their efforts to salvage it, the situation deteriorated. Dern accused Santos of physical abuse, shedding light on the distressing circumstances she endured. She expressed her inability to protect herself due to the fear of legal consequences and the risk of losing custody of their daughter.
In an interview on The MMA Hour with Ariel Helwani, Mackenzie Dern candidly discussed her determination to keep their family together. However, she also revealed how the situation escalated to the point where the police had to intervene. Their daughter was exposed to a volatile environment, an experience no parent wishes upon their child. Dern explained:
“I stayed in my relationship because I believed in the family, and I believe that that’s what God wanted and stuff. But there’s a certain point where you try, try, and try, and things don’t change, and it just keeps getting worse and worse. And then, like I was saying, I wasn’t even able to defend myself. … Like, police were getting called to the house. It was just getting out of control, and going through that in front of your daughter, you don’t want your daughter to witness that.”
In response to Mackenzie Dern’s allegations, Wesley Santos vehemently denied them and expressed disappointment that Dern had chosen to discuss their ongoing divorce publicly. He firmly stated that “Mackenzie’s statements are false and defamatory,” emphasizing his intention to address the matter only after the legal proceedings are concluded.
The divorce proceedings exposed a barrage of accusations from both sides, ranging from physical and emotional abuse to custody disputes and financial improprieties. Dern accused Santos of mistreating her dogs, withholding access to her Brazilian bank account, misusing her credit card, and forging a lease renewal for their shared apartment.
Santos, on the other hand, claimed that Dern had physically assaulted him and presented photographic evidence of a bloody nose he alleged she had caused during an altercation in a restaurant parking lot. He also accused Dern of mistreating their daughter, an accusation she denied.
The court’s verdict was mixed, offering no clear vindication to either Dern or Santos regarding their respective allegations. Joint custody of their daughter, Moa, was granted, with Dern designated as the primary earner. Consequently, the court ordered Dern to pay Santos $10,000 for his legal fees and an additional monthly allowance of $4,006 for spousal and child support.
Mackenzie Dern has since moved on and is currently in a relationship with Antonio Trócoli (“Malvado”), a 32-year-old mixed martial artist from Brazil with a record of 12-3-0, 1 NC. Antonio Trócoli had a tumultuous journey to the octagon, which included a failed test for nandrolone and a release from the UFC after being pulled from the lineup. Despite the setbacks, he last competed in the Brazilian Fighting Series in November of 2021.
The two even adopted a cane corso puppy together.
The two even visited Henry Cejudo’s gym together.
Dern is currently preparing for an appearance at UFC 295 where she’ll be facing former champion Jessica Andrade.