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Sisters sue USA Gymnastics over sex abuse

Two former USA Gymnastics national team members have filed civil lawsuits against the organisation, disgraced ex-team doctor Larry Nassar, and the US Olympic Committee (USOC) for failing to prevent sexual assault of young women in their care.

Tasha Schwikert, 33, who won a bronze medal at the 2000 Sydney Olympics, and her sister Jordan, 32, described themselves as Nassar victims during a news conference at a Los Angeles law firm yesterday morning (Singapore time).

The complaint, filed in the Los Angeles County Superior Court, seeks to hold the defendants accountable, alleging the Schwikerts were referred to Nassar for medical treatment, "even though it knew or should have known of Nassar's sexual abuse and could have prevented it by taking sexual abuse allegations seriously and maintaining a culture of accountability and transparency".

Nassar was sentenced in February to up to 125 years in prison after some 200 women, including Olympians, testified about decades of abuse by him.

USA Gymnastics said in a statement that it was sorry the Schwikerts were abused by Nassar and it is working to make changes to ensure that athlete safety and well-being remains at the forefront of its work, but it would not comment on pending litigation.

The USOC did not respond when asked to comment on the lawsuit. - REUTERS

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