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In Washington, Olympic gymnasts charge FBI negligence in Nassar case

September 16, 2021, 10:25 AM

Serial sexual assailant Larry Nassar has been behind bars since 2017, but the fallout from the case continues. 

Simone Biles on the balance beam in 2016 (File photo)

On Wednesday, American gymnasts Simone Biles, McKayla Maroney, Maggie Nichols and Aly Raisman testified before members of the Senate Judiciary Committee in Washington, with their remarks focused on the failure of certain FBI agents to take their complaints seriously. The delays in acting on the women's charges allowed Nassar to molest more women. 

Nassar, a Michigan State University osteopath, was a doctor for the U.S. women's Olympic team and in the course of his work there and in private practice, assaulted hundreds of women in the guise of providing "pelvic-floor therapy."

The Washington Post reports:

Maroney said Nassar molested her in London in 2012 just before she won an Olympic gold medal. While Biles’s testimony was heartbreaking and faltering at times, Maroney’s tone shifted from sheer horror to simmering fury at how the FBI disregarded her account.

“I told the FBI all of this, and they chose to falsify my report, and to not only minimize my abuse but silence me yet again,” she said. “It took them 14 months to report anything, when Larry Nassar — in my opinion — should have been in jail that day.” 

The one-day hearing was capped by FBI Director Christopher Wray, who offered an apology, and said the agent in charge of the early investigation of Nassar, has been fired: 

“I want to begin by saying to the brave women testifying this morning . . . I am deeply and profoundly sorry to each and every one of you,” he said. “I’m especially sorry that there were people at the FBI who had their own chance to stop this monster back in 2015 and failed, and that is inexcusable. It never should have happened, and we’re doing everything in our power to make sure it never happens again.”

Read more:  Washington Post

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