Nineteen victims of USA Swimming coaching sexual abuse help pull USA Swimming's Chuck Wielgus' induction into the Internatioal Swimming Hall of Fame
Attorneys Robert Allard and Jonathan Little
Online PR News – 03-June-2014 – San Jose, CA – Attorneys for the legal team representing numerous victims of USA Swimming coaching sexual abuse released the following statement concerning the pulling of USA Swimming Executive Director Chuck Wielgus' induction into the International Swimming Hall of Fame.
“Despite all that has happened in recent days, not one victim of USA Swimming’s dozens of pedophile coaches have yet to receive a public apology from the so-called “leader” of this organization. Wielgus' lack of character demonstrated in the last few days proves that he should step down as head of USA Swimming while Congress needs to expedite the investigation of this rank leadership group.”
The following is statement from USA Swimming coaching sex abuse attorneys Robert Allard and Jonathan Little:
"On behalf of the victims of USA Swimming sex abuse, while we are pleased that Chuck Wielgus will not be inducted into the International Swimming Hall of Fame, we are more determined than ever to effect both his immediate resignation as the leader of USA Swimming and increased scrutiny by our federal government into the sordid affairs of this corrupt organization.
In light of information recently revealed by Scott Reid of the Orange County Register, this sad saga begins with an “end around” orchestrated by former USA Swimming President Dale Neuburger in order to get Mr. Wielgus inducted into the Hall of Fame in the first instance. Based on what we have seen during the last five (5) years in litigation against USA Swimming, this is standard politicking for its leaders; if there is opposition (in this case ISHOF board member Terry Carlisle), remove it from the equation and bulldoze straight ahead.
Then, after the induction was announced, Mr. Wielgus had an opportunity to review a Petition signed by nineteen (19) victims of USA Swimming pedophile coaches and voluntarily resign before it became public. Mr. Wielgus vigorously refused, insisting that he committed no wrongdoing and that criticism levied against him was misplaced. Once he forced a public release of the Petition, Mr. Wielgus, with Mr. Neuburger and other past USA Swimming Presidents loyally standing to his side, steadfastly declined over the next several days to accept any responsibility whatsoever in his role in the sexual abuse of our clients. Instead, these venerable past and present Presidents, no doubt with the assistance of their handsomely paid assassin, USA Swimming’s “general counsel” Richard Young, offered a pathetic defense of Mr. Wielgus’ role in what has been proven to be clear instances of cover ups.
Amazingly, this public defense of Mr. Wielgus attempted to justify his actions taken in the case of Andy King even though all of the evidence points to him being an enabler for him and his acts of sexual abuse. It starts with his own email that clearly states that he ordered that a sex abuse complaint against King issued by one of our clients in 2002 be kept confidential and ends with a boldface lie to ESPN stating that Andy King was never on the USA Swimming “radar” until his arrest in 2009.
Similar misrepresentations and half-truths were issued as it relates to other sex abuse matters that he mishandled. Only when the media attention became overwhelming and we were forced to expose the fallacies advanced by this “Past Presidents Club” did Wielgus decide to capitulate and exercise the only option he had left - resign. This had nothing to do with making the right decision, but rather the only one he could make while he had even a semblance of dignity. In other words, Mr. Wielgus made this move to “save face” and so that he would no longer be publicly disgraced. This is not the sign of a leader but rather a school yard bully and a coward.
To make matters worse, not a single apologetic word was uttered to our clients or other victims over the last few days. Despite all that has happened in recent days, not one victim of USA Swimming’s dozens of pedophile coaches have yet to receive a public apology from the so-called “leader” of this organization. Wielgus' lack of character demonstrated in the last few days proves that he should step down as head of USA Swimming while Congress needs to expedite the investigation of this rank leadership group."
About Sex Abuse Attorneys Robert Allard and Jonathan Little
Robert Allard and Jonathan Little head up a national litigation team that has been advocating for nearly five years on behalf of sex abuse victims of USA Swimming coaching sexual abuse. Allard was honored as 2012 California Lawyer of the Year for Public Justice as a result of helping children and their families recover from the evils of sexual abuse.