The U.S. Justice Department has launched a fresh inquiry into the FBI’s botched handling of its sex abuse investigation into disgraced former USA Gymnastics doctor Larry Nassar, after previously declining to prosecute the agents involved, Deputy Attorney General Lisa Monaco said on Tuesday.
“The recently confirmed assistant attorney general for the Criminal Division is currently reviewing this matter, including new information that has come to light,” Monaco told the Senate Judiciary Committee on Tuesday, adding that she is “constrained” on what more she can say.
“I do want the committee and frankly, I want the survivors to understand how exceptionally seriously we take this issue,” she added.
In an emotional hearing last month famous gymnasts including Simone Biles and McKayla Maroney appeared before the same Senate panel, where they blasted the FBI for failing to properly investigate abuse they suffered under Nassar’s care.
The hearing was prompted by a scathing investigation by the Justice Department’s inspector general, which uncovered widespread and dire errors which allowed Nassar to continue to abuse at least 70 more victims before he was finally arrested.
Two former FBI agents were singled out in the report – the former Indianapolis field office Special Agent in Charge W. Jay Abbott and a former supervisory special agent who has since been identified as Michael Langeman.
The inspector general referred both former agents for prosecution, but the Justice Department declined to bring charges against them in September 2020.