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Nassar sex abuse victims, university reach $500 million settlement: attorneys

17 May, 2018, 05:05 | Author: Tommie Newton
  • In this Nov. 22 2017 file

The continuous predatory behavior of disgraced school doctor Larry Nassar will cost Michigan State University at least $500 million.

Now, in the midst of ongoing lawsuits and investigations, the sport of gymnastics is figuring out how to move forward; and advocates and victims, like Aly, are continuing to speak out about sexual assault and advocate for change.

Rachael Denhollander was the first woman to come forward and accuse Nassar of abuse, and is seen by many of his victims as the reason they came forward, too.

Michigan State University on Wednesday (Thursday NZ Time) announced a US$500 million (NZ$724 million) settlement with more than 300 women and girls who said they were assaulted by sports doctor Larry Nassar in the worst sex-abuse case in sports history.

As a result of today's agreement between the attorneys representing 332 claimants and representatives from Michigan State, $425 million will be distributed to claimants who are now part of the lawsuits.

And she is renewing her call for MI lawmakers to enact legislation that would retroactively extend the time limit for victims of childhood sexual abuse to sue. A successful resolution to the litigation is a positive step in moving us all forward. It also did not say how Michigan State will pay the bill.

The settlement must still be finalized, officials said.

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Prior to today's settlement announcement ESPN said that it was awarding one of the network's most prestigious honors, the Arthur Ashe Courage Award, to Nassar victims.

Martha Karolyi told USA news program "Dateline NBC" last month that Nassar conned her and her husband in much the same way that he conned the parents and coaches of the girls he abused.

Denhollander was the first survivor to file a criminal complaint against Larry Nassar back in 2016.

Nassar, 54, who is serving a federal prison sentence of 40 to 175 years in MI, had worked for decades with MSU students as well as U.S. Olympic gymnasts who alleged he abused them, including gold medalists Jordyn Wieber, Aly Raisman, Gabby Douglas and McKayla Maroney.

His current sentence is 40 to 175 years in prison.

The deal was announced Wednesday by Michigan State and lawyers for 332 victims.

Michigan State University became the subject of its own investigation earlier this year, as a special prosecutor looked the school's role - particularly the university's lack of action - in Nassar's serial abuse of student athletes. Interim President John Engler last month told state lawmakers that settlements should not lead to an increase in tuition fees, the university newspaper State News reported. He had an worldwide reputation while working at the same time for USA Gymnastics, which trains Olympians.

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