Olympic gold medalist Simone Biles, Aly Raisman and dozens of other women who say they were sexually assaulted by Larry Nassar are now seeking more than $1 billion from the FBI, the now convicted sports doctor. have failed to stop when the agency first made charges against him, the lawyer said Wednesday.
There is no dispute that in 2015 FBI agents knew Nassar was accused of assaulting a gymnast, but failed to act, allowing him to continue targeting young women and girls for more than a year. Can keep
“It’s time to hold the FBI accountable,” said Maggie Nichols, a national champion gymnast in Oklahoma in 2017-19.
Under federal law, a government agency has six months to respond to tort claims filed on Wednesday. Trials can proceed based on the response of the FBI.
About 90 claimants include Biles, Raisman and MacKayla Maroney, all Olympic gold medalists, according to Manly, Stewart & Finaly, a California law firm.
“If the FBI had simply done its job, Nassar would have been stopped before he had a chance to abuse hundreds of girls, including me,” said former University of Michigan gymnast Samantha Roy.
Last year, Raisman told Congress that the FBI pressured him to accept Nassar’s plea.
The Needham native said, “The agent downplayed the importance of my misbehavior. It made me think that my criminal case was not worth pursuing.”
An email was sent to the FBI seeking comment.
Indianapolis-based USA Gymnastics told local FBI agents in 2015 that three gymnasts said they were attacked by Team Doctor Nassar. But the FBI did not open a formal investigation or notify federal or state officials in Michigan, according to the Justice Department’s inspector general, an internal watchdog.
In 2016 Los Angeles FBI agents launched a sex tourism investigation against Nassar and interviewed several victims, but did not even alert Michigan officials, the inspector general said.
Nassar was not arrested until the fall of 2016 during an investigation by Michigan State University police. He was a doctor at Michigan State.
The Michigan Attorney General’s office eventually handled assault charges against Nassar, while federal prosecutors in Grand Rapids, Michigan, filed a child pornography case. He has been in jail for decades.
In remarks to Congress last year, FBI Director Christopher Wray acknowledged major mistakes.
“I’m especially sorry that there were people in the FBI who had their chance to stop this monster in 2015 and failed. And that’s unforgivable,” Ray told victims at a Senate hearing.
The Justice Department said in May that it would not pursue criminal charges against former FBI agents who were accused of providing false or incomplete responses during the Inspector General’s investigation.
Michigan State University, which was also accused of squandering opportunities for years to stop Nassar, agreed to pay $500 million to the more than 300 women and girls who were attacked by Nassar. USA Gymnastics and the US Olympic and Paralympic Committee inked a $380 million deal.
This story was originally published by CBS News June 8, 2022 at 9:11 a.m. ET.
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