DENVER (AP) — A U.S. Olympic Committee spokesman is portraying a sex-trafficking lawsuit filed against the federation as one “calculated to provoke and offend” rather than seek justice.
Last week, four taekwondo athletes sued the USOC and USA Taekwondo, alleging they allowed athletes to train and compete with “known predator coaches.” They listed two-time gold medalist Steven Lopez and his brother, Jean, in the lawsuit, as well. Both are under investigation by the U.S. Center for SafeSport.
USOC spokesman Patrick Sandusky said that while criticism of the case does not extend to the athletes who are suing, the complaint, “appears to be a cynical attempt by counsel to subvert important protective laws with the goal of sensationalizing this case.”
Also recently, Martha and Bela Karolyi sued the USOC seeking damages for the canceled sale of their famed Texas training center — a transaction that tanked in the wake of sex-abuse cases involving team doctor Larry Nassar.