TEHRAN, Young Journalists Club (YJC) -A new report accuses the FBI of slow response to abuse accusations against a former US Gymnastics doctor, giving him an opportunity to molest over three dozen more women and girls.
Larry Nassar sexually assaulted at least 40 girls and women while he was under FBI investigation for similar behavior, according to a new report by The New York Times.
Nassar first fell under FBI scrutiny in July 2015 after three top-tier female athletes lodged complaints to the bureau. However, he was allowed to continue practicing medicine until September 2016, when The Indianapolis Star published damning accusations against him.
The FBI responded to the Times report by saying that many allegations against Nassar “transcended jurisdictions,” meaning bureaucratic inefficiency was a possible reason for its slow response.
The list of girls accusing the now-convicted doctor of sexual abuse currently stands at 265.
The silence at times distracted the victims and their families, including Gina Nichols, the mother of gymnast Maggie Nichols, who was not contacted by the FBI for nearly 11 months after the information she provided caused the agency to start the federal inquiry.
“I never got a phone call from the police or the FBI” during that time, Nichols, a registered nurse, said. “Not one person. Not one. Not one. Not one.”
Last month, Nassar was sentenced to between 40 and 175 years in prison by a judge in Michigan for sexually abusing young athletes, including winning gymnasts Aly Raisman and Jordyn Wieber.
The scandal prompted the entire director board of the USA Gymnastics (USAG) to step down.
It has sparked a national outcry and the US Congress, Department of Education and USOC announced they would further investigate the matter.
An investigation in the House of Representatives will also examine allegations of sexual harassment by officials in other sports, including swimming and taekwondo.