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Károlyi Ranch investigation clears Béla and Márta Károlyi of criminal wrongdoing

Asher Fair
116   //    30 Jun 2018, 07:52 IST

2012 US Olympic Gymnastics Trials - Day 1
Béla and Márta Károlyi at Day 1 of the 2012 US Olympic Gymnastics Trials ahead of the 2012 Summer Olympics in London, England

Béla and Márta Károlyi, the former USA Gymnastics national team coordinators and owners of the USA Gymnastics National Team Training Center Károlyi Ranch in Huntsville, Texas were both cleared of criminal wrongdoing by Texas law enforcement officials as a result of the Károlyi Ranch investigation conducted by the Walker County Sheriff's Office and the Texas Rangers.

That said, they both still face lawsuits from several of the people who accused 54-year-old disgraced former USA Gymnastics and Michigan State University physician Larry Nassar of sexual assault.

Nassar, who had unfettered access to the gymnasts who were trained at the Károlyi Ranch even at night when they were alone in their cabins, is currently serving a 60-year federal prison sentence that he was given in December on three child pornography charges, and he is doing so at United States Penitentiary, Tucson, which is a maximum-security federal prison in Tucson, Arizona.

The Károlyi Ranch investigation led to six more charges being brought against Nassar for second-degree sexual assault of a child. One additional charge was brought against former trainer Debbie Van Horn, who worked alongside Nassar, for the same reason.

Nassar had already been charged with 10 counts of sexual assault in addition to the three counts of child pornography with which he was charged. In January, he was sentenced to between 40 and 175 years in state prison on seven of those 10 sexual assault charges, and in February, he was sentenced to between 40 and 125 more years in state prison on the other three of those 10 sexual assault charges

In 1999, Béla Károlyi was hired as the first women's national team coordinator. He was replaced by Márta in 2001. She stepped down following the 2016 Summer Olympics in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.

Just yesterday, USA Gymnastics named Tom Forster as the new United States women's "high performance team coordinator", which is the same position as the national team coordinator but with a different name.

John Manly, the attorney for dozens of those who have accused Nassar of sexual assault, was not pleased that there were no charges against either Béla or Márta Károlyi stemming from the Károlyi Ranch investigation.


Attorney Michelle Smith shared similar feelings. Here is what she had to say about the matter, according to KHOU.

"And to those little girls who had the nightmare of a their doctor coming into their rooms to abuse them under the guise of treatment, with Van Horn sometimes present, the Karolyis, Nassar, Van Horn, USAG—it was all one in the same, adults who failed to protect them, hurt them, and turned a blind eye towards their pain and suffering."

Here is what Walker County district attorney David Weeks had to say about neither Béla nor Márta Károlyi the being charged as a result of the Károlyi Ranch investigation, according to KHOU.

“We’re frustrated. There were so many chances for something to be done. These women deserve to have their voices heard. I think the Karolyi Ranch has been painted by a brush that will not be forgotten. There was a total failure by USAG to protect these athletes. There however is no corroborating evidence to show the Karolyi family did anything wrong."

He added the following, according to USA Today.

“Nassar did not work for them. The people who had control over him failed. Simple as that.”

Here is what Walker County assistant district attorney Stephanie Stroud had to say about the matter, according to ABC13.

"There are no criminal charges against the Karolyis at this time. We don't believe at this time there's any corroborated evidence to support criminal charges. It's our belief that there was a total failure by (USA Gymnastics) to protect athletes."
Asher Fair
Beyond the Flag Expert/Editor Sportskeeda Senior Analyst SportsPress Owner
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