Convicted sex abuser and former USA gymnastics team doctor Larry Nassar still owes five of his survivors nearly $58,000 in restitution. Meanwhile, he’s had more than $12,000 deposited into his inmate account in the last three and a half years he’s spent behind bars.
A motion filed Wednesday by the U.S. Justice Department confirmed that Nassar received monetary deposits into his inmate account that totaled $12,825. Included in this total was a $600 stimulus check issued in January 2021 and a $1,400 stimulus check issued in March 2021. Now his account balance is just over $2,000, according to the court filing by Assistant U.S. Attorney Joel Fauson — so how did Nassar spend the other $10,500?
On Wednesday, Senate Judiciary Committee Chair Dick Durbin, D-Ill., and ranking member Chuck Grassley, R-Iowa, called on the Bureau of Prisons to ensure that Nassar survivors receive proper restitution.
BREAKING: After @washingtonpost reported the Bureau of Prison’s mishandling of inmate accounts may be sheltering funds owed to victims of crimes, Chair @SenatorDurbin & Ranking Member @ChuckGrassley are demanding BOP ensure that Larry Nassar victims receive adequate restitution. pic.twitter.com/Zfkof3YAks
— Senate Judiciary Committee (@JudiciaryDems) August 5, 2021
“Recent reports that BOP may be failing to ensure that victims of former USA Gymnastics doctor Larry Nassar receive thousands of dollars in restitution raise urgent new concerns about BOP’s handling of inmate accounts, and the extent to which the accounts may be inappropriately used to shelter funds owed to victims of crimes,” the senators wrote. “These reports are deeply disturbing. … To the extent Nassar has the resources to make payments to his victims, he must fulfill these obligations.”
In 2017, Nassar pleaded guilty to possessing child sex abuse images, and in 2018, he pleaded guilty to sexually abusing 10 minors, though he’s been accused of assaulting hundreds of women. Nassar is serving a 175-year sentence for his crimes.
Nassar has only paid approximately $8.33 per month toward his sentencing fees, amounting to a total of $300 since December 2017. Last week, Nassar’s current inmate account balance was $2,041.57. That means Nassar has paid the absolute minimum possible, all while spending an unaccounted-for $10,500.
Although Nassar owes approximately $60,000, a new report by the Washington Post confirmed that the Bureau of Prisons has only required Nassar to pay about $300 toward fines imposed as part of his 2017 sentencing. According to court documents, “If a person obligated to provide restitution, or pay a fine, receives substantial resources from any source, including inheritance, settlement or other judgement, during a period of incarceration, such person shall be required to apply the value of such resources to any restitution or fine.”
In June, the Washington Post reported a pattern of federal prison inmates keeping large amounts of money in government-run deposit accounts.
“The program run by the BOP has long frustrated and angered law enforcement officials from other agencies, who say it poses significant risks for abuse, money laundering and corruption, yet the agency, already plagued with staffing and management problems, has for years resisted efforts to change it because its leaders maintain they are already diligent about making inmates pay what they owe,” the Post’s Devlin Barrett wrote.
The motion calls on courts to order the BOP to turn over funds in Nassar’s account.
Federal agencies continue to let down Nassar victims. Last month, a DOJ inspector general’s report found that the FBI completely bungled an investigation into allegations against Nassar, handing the disgraced doctor hundreds of opportunities to continue abusing women.