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USA Gymnastics files for bankruptcy to pay sex abuse settlements more quickly


USA Gymnastics chair: 'We owe it to the survivors'

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As USA Gymnastics continues to crumble in the wake of the widespread sexual abuse committed by former doctor Larry Nassar, the organization filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy Wednesday in an attempt to speed up the process of paying out settlements, ESPN reported.

USA Gymnastics chair Kathryn Carson said the organization is not liquidating, but rather reorganizing, as it deals with dozens of civil lawsuits from victims and their families.

Not enough money: USA Gymnastics doesn't have enough money to settle the many lawsuits, according to Carson, reporting that it has about the same range of liabilities as it has assets ($50 million to $100 million). Insurance policies will be used to cover some costs of the lawsuits.

"We owe it to the survivors to resolve, fully and finally, claims based on the horrific acts of the past and, through this process, seek to expedite resolution and help them move forward," Carson said in her statement.

Survivors could be owed as much as $150 million in total.

Olympic governing body status in jeopardy: The U.S. Olympic Committee is seeking to revoke USA Gymnastics' recognition as an official governing body. The bankruptcy likely won't change that.

"[The bankruptcy filing] does not change our perspective or our commitment to that process," said USOC CEO Sarah Hirshland, according to Bloomberg.

Leadership problems: John Manly, an attorney representing numerous women suing USA Gymnastics, said the organization is not deserving of USOC certification.

"The leadership of USA Gymnastics has proven itself to be both morally and financially bankrupt," Manly said, according to ESPN. "They have inflicted and continue to inflict unimaginable pain on survivors and their families. They are incapable of meeting their obligations as an Olympic governing body."

Since former USA Gymnastics President Steve Penny stepped down in March 2017, two other presidents have taken and subsequently left the position. Penny was charged with evidence tampering in October and is still owed $340,000 in severance pay from USA Gymnastics.

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