Connect with us

News

Simone Biles blasts USA Gymnastics, FBI for allowing sex abuse

Published

on

Simone Biles

 

US star gymnasts berate institutions overseen by Congress for failing to investigate years of abuses. United States Olympic gymnast Simone Biles blasted USA Gymnastics and the FBI for standing by while team doctor Larry Nassar assaulted her and hundreds of other athletes in the largest sexual abuse case in the history of American sports.

 

 

“We have been failed and we deserve answers,” Biles said in blunt and tearful testimony at a US Senate public hearing on Wednesday where she appeared with three other athletes, Aly Raisman, McKayla Maroney and Maggie Nichols. “It really feels like the FBI turned a blind eye to us,” said Biles, who placed additional blame at the feet of legislators who have oversight over congressionally chartered US Olympic governing bodies.

 

 

Simone Biles

Maroney echoed Biles’s accusations, recounting how she told “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.” When she recounted abuse that had happened in 2011 at the world championships in Tokyo, where she said Nassar gave her a sleeping pill and then got “on top of me, molesting me for hours,” she tearfully told an FBI agent over the phone.

 

 

The FBI agent then asked her “Is that all?” – an answer told the Senate committee “was one of the worst moments in this entire process for me”. Biles said she chose to testify “so that no little girl must endure what I, the athletes at this table, and the countless others who needlessly suffered under Nassar’s guise of medical treatment for which we continue to endure today.”

 

 

Simone Biles

“We suffered and continue to suffer, because no one at FBI, USAG, or the USOPC did what was necessary to protect us,” Biles said. Department of Justice Inspector General Michael Horowitz issued a 119-page report in July detailing errors by law enforcement officers that allowed Nassar’s abuse to continue for months. Nassar was convicted in 2017 and 2018 of sex crimes and is serving up to 175 years in prison.

FBI Director Chris Wray told the Senate panel that the actions of the agents who botched the investigation are inexcusable, and he announced that one of the agents “no longer works for the bureau in any capacity.” “I’m deeply and profoundly sorry,” Wray said. Wray faced sharp questioning from senators about why FBI agents who botched the probe were never prosecuted for their misconduct.

“The actions and inactions of the FBI employees detailed in (the Inspector General’s) report are totally unacceptable,” Wray said. “These individuals betrayed the core duty that they have of protecting people. They failed to protect young women and girls from abuse.”

Olympic gymnasts Simone Biles, McKayla Maroney, Maggie Nichols, and Aly Raisman told the Senate they knew of other young girls who were assaulted by Larry Nassar in the 18 months after the FBI was first formally told of the abuse

Olympic gymnasts Simone Biles, McKayla Maroney, Maggie Nichols, and Aly Raisman told the Senate they knew of other young girls who were assaulted by Larry Nassar in the 18 months after the FBI was first formally told of the abuse

Biles, the most decorated gymnast of all time, stunned the Tokyo Games in July when she dropped out of the team competition following a poor opening vault and then decided not to defend her all-around crown. Biles returned to competition a few days later to win a Bronze medal in the individual balance beam contest.

“I believe without a doubt that the circumstances that led to my abuse and allowed it to continue are directly the result of the fact that the organisations created by Congress to oversee and protect me as an athlete, USA Gymnastics and the United States Olympic and Paralympic Committee, failed to do their jobs,” Biles told the Senate.

The FBI’s investigation into Nassar started in July 2015, after USA Gymnastics President and CEO Stephen Penny reported the allegations to the FBI’s Indianapolis field office and provided agents with the names of three victims willing to be interviewed.

Simone Biles

That office, then led by Special Agent in Charge Jay Abbott, did not formally open an investigation. The FBI only interviewed one witness months later in September 2015, and failed to formally document that interview until February 2017 – well after the FBI had arrested Nassar on charges of possessing sexually explicit images of children in December 2016.

When the interview was finally documented in 2017 by an unnamed supervisory special agent, the report was filled with “materially false information and omitted material information,” Horowitz’s report determined. The FBI Indianapolis office failed to share the allegations with state or local law enforcement agencies.

“It is not only that the FBI failed to do its job, systematically and repeatedly. It is also the cover-up – the cover-up that occurred when FBI agents made materially false statements and deceptive omissions,” Senator Richard Blumenthal said, adding that the Justice Department has declined to prosecute the agents.

Simone Biles and BF

“My hope is that the Department of Justice, which was invited today and has declined to appear, will match your courage by explaining why those lies by FBI agents did not lead to criminal prosecution.”

Horowitz also said that Abbott, who retired from the FBI in 2018, had violated the FBI’s conflict of interest policy by discussing a possible job with the US Olympic Committee while he was involved with the Nassar investigation.

Neither Abbott nor the other unnamed supervisory special agent who botched the Nassar probe were prosecuted for their actions. The FBI previously called Abbott’s behaviour “appalling” and said the supervisory special agent remains with the FBI but is no longer a supervisor and is “not working on any more FBI matters”.

Simone Biles

A lawyer for Abbott previously said in a statement he is thankful to prosecutors for bringing Nassar to justice. Nassar, who had been the main doctor for Olympic gymnasts, was sentenced in federal court in 2017 to 60 years in prison on charges of possessing child sex abuse material.

The following year, he was also sentenced up to 175 years and up to 125 years, respectively, in two separate Michigan courts for molesting female gymnasts under his care. Prosecutors have estimated he sexually assaulted hundreds of women.

A former US Olympics coach with ties to Nassar, John Geddert, killed himself in February, hours after being charged with human trafficking, sexual assault and running a criminal enterprise.

Click to comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

Advertisement

Recent Posts

Serena Williams & Lebron James to BREED a baby Serena Williams & Lebron James to BREED a baby
Celebrity21 hours ago

White Billionaire offers $1 Billion to Serena Williams and Lebron James to BREED a baby

  A White Billionaire has offered $1 Billion to Serena Williams and Lebron James to BREED a baby… Popular Billionaire...

Celebrity22 hours ago

Serena Williams: “I broke up with Jackie Long when he deliberately stopped picking up my calls”

  Tennis star Serena Williams has poured out her heart on the break up of her relationship with Jackie Long...

Venus Williams outfits Venus Williams outfits
News2 days ago

Look at Venus Williams’ 10 most outrageous outfits

  When some people finish a long day of work, they go relax in their backyards; when Venus Williams finishes...

Serena Williams pregnancy Serena Williams pregnancy
Celebrity2 days ago

Serena Williams retired at U.S. Open because she’s pregnant with 2nd child

  Serena Williams: “After careful consideration and following the advice of my doctors and medical team, I have decided to...

Serena Williams shows off her famously toned pics Serena Williams shows off her famously toned pics
Celebrity2 days ago

Serena Williams: 8 jaw-dropping pictures that got fans talking

  When Serena Williams isn’t busy burning up opponents on the tennis court – she does a pretty good job...

Serena Williams pictured getting cosy with her French tennis coach Patrick Mouratoglou Serena Williams pictured getting cosy with her French tennis coach Patrick Mouratoglou
Celebrity4 days ago

Patrick Mouratoglou’s cosy and romantic relationship with Serena Williams

  Maybe now we know the secret behind Serena Williams’ unstoppable form this year. According to Vanity Fair, she and...

Sean Kingston and Serena Williams slept together Sean Kingston and Serena Williams slept together
Celebrity1 week ago

Sean Kingston: “I dated & slept with Serena Williams right before her wedding” — ‘Serena wanted it…’

  Sean Kingston paid a visit to BBC Radio 1’s Smashed With Sloth and discussed topics like his come up...

Serena Williams happy with her husband Alexis Ohanian Serena Williams happy with her husband Alexis Ohanian
Celebrity1 week ago

Serena Williams: “Why I prefer vaginal sex”

  On and off the court, Serena Williams serves up style and beauty looks that keep us all buzzing. Williams...

Venus Williams flashes Venus Williams flashes
Celebrity1 week ago

Dazzling Venus Williams Accidentally Flashes Her Pants and Got Fans Talking

  Venus Williams has won 75 championship tennis titles throughout her decades-long career. She runs several successful businesses, including her...

Serena Williams seems inspired by bodycoon dress Serena Williams seems inspired by bodycoon dress
Celebrity1 week ago

Serena Williams: 8 stunning photos everyone is talking about

  Millions of spectators from around the world love to watch tennis. I am also a lover and a hardcore...

Advertisement

Copyright © 2017