#AceNewsReport – Mar.26: The law firm representing many of the women in the California state court case said the payout agreed to by USC and the plaintiffs marked the largest sexual abuse settlement with a university and the biggest personal injury payout by any college or university in US history:
University of Southern California to pay out $1 billion in gynaecologist sex abuse case: ‘The University of Southern California has agreed to pay a record $US852 million ($1.1 billion) to women who say they were sexually abused by a former campus gynaecologist’ after more than 700 women accused George Tyndall of sexually abusing them as patients, and the prestigious school of trying to cover it up.
Posted 5h ago, updated 2h ago
Mr Tyndall practised at USC for nearly 30 years before the private Los Angeles-based university suspended him in 2016, then allowed him to quietly retire without immediately reporting him to the state medical board.
A separate $US215 million settlement of a federal class action case in 2018 and a more recent $US50 million cluster of individual state court settlements brings USC’s total payout to $US1.1 billion.
No further civil claims are outstanding.
Mr Tyndall, who has denied wrongdoing, lost his medical licence and has been charged with sexually assaulting 21 patients under the guise of gynaecological treatment or exams.
He has pleaded not guilty to 35 felony counts and remains free on bail. No trial date has been set.
His civil defence lawyer was not immediately available for comment.
Mr Tyndall, now in his 70s, was technically a party to the USC settlement but lacks any funds to contribute, Vince Finaldi, a lead plaintiffs lawyer and negotiator of the deal, told Reuters.
The flood of lawsuits brought by former patients against Mr Tyndall and USC accused the university of negligence and complicity, asserting school officials were aware of his misconduct for years but kept him in a position to continue preying on students placed in his care.
“The enormous size of this settlement speaks to the immense harm done to our clients and the culpability of USC,” plaintiffs attorney John Manley said in a statement.
“It is a direct result of a billionaire-dominated Board of Trustees that placed fundraising, prestige and the ‘USC Brand’ above the safety of vulnerable female students.”
Widespread faculty and student outrage over the university’s handling of the matter forced the university’s president to resign.
The scandal even prompted the Chinese government to voice “deep concern” over published reports that many of the alleged victims were students from China.
University officials have admitted failing to act on a number of complaints made against Mr Tyndall between 2000 and 2014, but denied a deliberate cover-up.
Trustees chair Rick Caruso, named to head the board after the scandal came to light, conceded that the university “fell short by not doing everything it could to protect those who matter to us most — our students”.
M Finaldi said individual payouts in the latest settlement would likely range from mid-six-figure sums to millions of dollars.
The USC settlement far exceeds the $US500 million payout agreed to by Michigan State University to resolve civil claims stemming from allegations of serial sexual abuse leveled against Larry Nassar, a former USA Gymnastics team doctor on the school’s staff.
Nassar was sentenced to up to 300 years in prison in a pair of 2018 trials after more than 350 women testified of abuse at his hands.
#AceNewsDesk report …………Published: Mar.26: 2021:
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