Sens. Moran & Blumenthal Statement on DOJ Decision To Review Prosecution Decisions for FBI Agents who Mishandled the Larry Nassar Case and Lied to Investigators
Oct 06 2021
WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Senators Jerry Moran (R-Kan.) and Richard Blumenthal (D-CT), authors of the Empowering Olympic, Paralympic, and Amateur Athlete Act, released the following statement after Deputy Attorney General Lisa Monaco announced that the Department of Justice would review its previous decision not to prosecute Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) agents who failed to act on reports they received about Larry Nassar’s abuse of athletes and later lied to investigators in an attempt to cover up their missteps. This misconduct was outlined in a report released by the Office of the Inspector General of the Department of Justice (OIG DOJ). The DOJ IG made criminal referrals for these actions, which the Department of Justice previously declined to act on.
“We are encouraged that the Department of Justice is reviewing its earlier decision not to hold accountable the FBI agents who knew of Larry Nassar’s abuse, did nothing, and then lied about it – in violation of their sworn duty and the law. There are dozens of athletes who would have been spared Nassar’s abuse if these agents had just done their jobs. These crimes demand accountability.”
“After conducting this review, we expect the Department of Justice to provide the kind of public explanation for its final prosecution decision that has so far been lacking. Although the Department does not usually provide such explanations, the Justice Manual authorizes a case-closing letter explaining its decision-making in similar situations, especially where law enforcement officers are accused of misconduct or criminal behavior. This case certainly qualifies for such treatment.”
Sens. Moran and Blumenthal repeatedly pressed the DOJ IG to investigate and report on the FBI’s handling of the Nassar case after uncovering evidence of misconduct during their eighteen-month investigation into systemic abuse within the U.S. Olympic movement. Their joint congressional investigation was launched the day after Larry Nassar was sentenced to prison and included four subcommittee hearings, interviews with Olympic athletes and survivors, and the retrieval of over 70,000 pages of documents.
Last year, Congress approved Sens. Moran and Blumenthal’s sweeping Olympic reform legislation to reform the U.S. Olympic and Paralympic Committee (USOPC) in the wake of abuse allegations that touched nearly all corners of Olympic sport.