The Justice Department said on Thursday it will stand by its prior decision not to file criminal charges against former FBI agents accused of botching the sex abuse investigation into former USA Gymnastics doctor Larry Nassar.

“This decision comes after multiple reviews and analyzes of evidence gathered in the investigation of the former agents, and reflects the recommendation of experienced prosecutors,” the department said in a statement.

“This does not in any way reflect a view that the investigation of Nassar was handled as it should have been, nor in any way reflects approval or disregard of the conduct of the former agents.”

Thursday’s announcement comes about seven months after Deputy Attorney General Lisa Monaco told Congress the department had agreed to re-evaluate its prior decision to decline prosecution.

The move came amid growing pressure on the department, which came under scrutiny following a scathing report by the inspector general last July.

In September 2021, a month before the probe was re-opened, high profile Olympic gymnasts including Simone Biles and McKayla Maroney gave heart-wrenching testimony before a U.S. Senate panel about the sexual abuse they endured for years under Nassar’s care.

At that hearing, the gymnasts blasted the FBI for its mishandling of the sexual abuse investigation, with Biles accusing the bureau of turning a blind eye to all of Nassar’s victims.

Nassar, who is also a former employee of Michigan State University, was found guilty in three separate cases, with one of the prison sentences running up to 175 years. 

© 2022 Thomson/Reuters. All rights reserved.

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