Friday, May 24, 2024

US to pay $100 million to survivors of Nassar’s abuse. FBI waited months to investigate

Must read


The Justice Department has agreed to pay more than $100 million to a group of survivors over the FBI’s mishandling of the sex abuse allegations levied against former USA Gymnastics team doctor Larry Nassar, a person familiar with the matter confirmed to USA TODAY Sports on Wednesday.

The person spoke under the condition of anonymity because the settlement has not been finalized.

The deal comes nearly three years after a report by the Justice Department Inspector General criticized FBI officials in Indianapolis for failing to respond to allegations of abuse they received about Nassar “with the utmost seriousness and urgency.” It also brings the liability payouts in legal cases brought by victims of Nassar’s abuse to nearly $1 billion.

A spokesperson said the Justice Department had no comment. The Wall Street Journal first reported the news.

The nine-figure payout will be distributed to more than 100 victims who filed legal claims against the FBI in 2022 following the release of the inspector general report − a group that includes Olympic champions Simone Biles, McKayla Maroney and Aly Raisman.

The report found that FBI agents “conducted limited follow-up” after first learning of the abuse allegations against Nassar, who has since been sentenced to what amounts to a lifetime prison sentence on sexual assault and child pornography charges.

The FBI’s inaction led to “a delay of over a year” in Nassar’s conviction, according to the report.

“After telling my entire story of abuse to the FBI in the summer of 2015, not only did the FBI not report my abuse, but when they eventually documented my report 17 months later, they made entirely false claims about what I said,” Maroney said at a Congressional hearing following the 2021 release of the report.

“What is the point of reporting abuse, if our own FBI agents are going to take it upon themselves to bury that report in the drawer?”

More than 500 women were abused by Nassar, who spent 18 years as the team doctor of the U.S. women’s national gymnastics team and also worked at Michigan State.

The university later agreed to distribute $500 million to survivors, while USA Gymnastics reached a separate settlement with Nassar’s victims of $380 million.

Latest article