VIDEO: Father of molested girls lunges at disgraced USA Gymnastics doctor in court

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Randall Margraves (L) lunges at Larry Nassar,(wearing orange) a former team USA Gymnastics doctor who pleaded guilty in November 2017 to sexual assault charges, during victim statements of his sentencing in the Eaton County Circuit Court in Charlotte, Michigan, U.S., on Friday, February 2, 2018. (REUTERS)
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Randall Margraves, left, father of three victims of Larry Nassar, background right, lunges at Nassar in Eaton County Circuit Court in Charlotte, Mich., on Friday. (AP)
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Randall Margraves (C) is tackled after he lunged at Larry Nassar (not seen) a former team USA Gymnastics doctor who pleaded guilty in November 2017 to sexual assault charges, during victim statements of his sentencing in the Eaton County Circuit Court in Charlotte, Michigan, U.S., on Friday, February 2, 2018. (REUTERS)
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Eaton County Sheriffs restrain Randall Margraves after he lunged at Larry Nassar, a former team USA Gymnastics doctor, who pleaded guilty in November 2017 to sexual assault charges, during victim statements of his sentencing in the Eaton County Circuit Court in Charlotte, Michigan, U.S., on Friday, February 2, 2018. (REUTERS)
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Larry Nassar, a former team USA Gymnastics doctor who pleaded guilty in November 2017 to sexual assault charges, enters the courtroom during victim statements of his sentencing in the Eaton County Circuit Court in Charlotte, Michigan, U.S., on Friday, February 2, 2018. (REUTERS)
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Randall Margraves' daughters from left, Lauren, Madison and Morgan listen as their father addresses the media about his actions of rushing toward Larry Nassar during the second day of his sentencing in Eaton County at Grewal Law office in Okemos, Mich., on Friday, Feb. 2, 2018. (AP)
Updated 03 February 2018
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VIDEO: Father of molested girls lunges at disgraced USA Gymnastics doctor in court

CHARLOTTE, Michigan: The enraged father of three daughters who were sexually abused by Larry Nassar lunged at the former USA Gymnastics national team doctor and tried to attack him during a sentencing hearing in a Michigan courtroom on Friday.
The father, Randall Margraves, was nearly within striking distance of Nassar before officers tackled him to the floor in front of shocked spectators including his daughters. The judge later accepted Margraves’ explanation that he “lost control” of his emotions and said she would not punish him.
The chaotic scene began minutes after sisters Lauren and Madison Margraves had concluded tearful victim statements on the second day of a sentencing hearing in Eaton County, following similar presentations by scores of other women through previous court sessions.
Nassar has already been sentenced to up to 175 years in prison for his guilty plea in neighboring Ingham County to molesting young women under the guise of medical treatment. He is scheduled to receive an additional sentence on Monday for his guilty plea to related charges in Eaton County.
At a news conference with his family and attorney hours after the outburst, Margraves, apologized for his behavior, saying he was “remorseful” and “embarrassed” for losing his composure.
“I am no hero. My daughters are heroes, and all the victims and survivors of this terrible atrocity,” he said, adding that he became enraged when “I had to hear what was said in those (victim) statements, and I had to look over at Larry Nassar shaking his head.”
Margraves said he had never heard the explicit details of what his daughters endured at the hands of Nassar until he listened to their accounts in court.
A tall, burly man with thick gray hair, Margraves said his relationship with his daughters had long been “strained, distant and difficult. Now I know the main reason. The reason was Larry Nassar.”
“Now I have to deal with the fact that I failed to protect my daughters,” he added.
The courtroom disturbance came after Margraves, standing alongside his daughters and wife, asked if Judge Janice Cunningham, as part of sentencing, would “grant me five minutes in a locked room” with Nassar.The judge replied that was not an option and rebuked Margraves for his vulgar language in calling Nassar “a son of a bitch” in court. Margraves then asked for one minute alone instead. The judge demurred again as some in the courtroom laughed uncomfortably.
The father then bolted toward Nassar, seated in an orange jump suit behind a nearby table. Margraves’ daughters’ hands flew to their mouths, and one of Nassar’s lawyers moved to shield his client.

’WHAT IF THIS HAPPENED TO YOU?’
Gasps, cries and shouts filled the courtroom as Margraves was wrestled to the floor, knocking items off a desk on the way down before he was handcuffed, while Nassar was whisked to safety.
“One minute!” Margraves demanded repeatedly, his head pinned down. As uniformed officers pulled him from the courtroom, he implored them, “What if this happened to you guys?“
The judge then ordered a recess.
The attempted attack underscored the anguish Nassar’s abuse has caused his victims’ parents, some of whom were present in the doctor’s exam room even as Nassar, unbeknownst to them, was molesting their children. Several have spoken in court about the guilt they feel for exposing their children to a sexual predator.
“I failed my own daughter,” Lynn Erickson said tearfully in court on Friday, as her daughter Ashley, one of Nassar’s victims, wiped away tears.
Margraves’ daughters had also described the impact on their parents. At Nassar’s first sentencing hearing last month, his oldest daughter Morgan said her father “went out driving to look for him around East Lansing” after news of his abuse broke.
“I’m not exactly sure what he would have done if he saw him,” she said. “However, he felt he still had to protect us in the way fathers do for their daughters.”
The county sheriff said his office would decide by next week whether to seek criminal charges against Margrave for his conduct. An online fundraising page at the website GoFundMe had collected more than $18,000 for the father’s potential legal fees by early evening.
Following the recess in Friday’s proceedings, the judge declined to cite Margraves for contempt of court.
“There is no way that this court is going to issue any type of punishment, given the circumstances of this case,” Cunningham said. “My heart does go out to you and your family for what has happened to you.”
Social media users expressed near universal support for Margraves.
“We all understand this father’s action,” said actor and pro-wrestler Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson. “Nassar’s punishment will go far beyond sentencing. Behind bars, he’ll soon know what hell means.” Mariah McClain, who testified about how Nassar abused her, said she had to leave the courtroom when Margraves erupted.
“It was just too much for me,” she said.
The case against Nassar, who is also serving a 60-year federal term for child pornography convictions, has sparked investigations into how US Olympic officials, USA Gymnastics, the sport’s governing body, and Michigan State University, where Nassar also worked, failed to investigate complaints about him going back years.


South Africa inquiry into top-level state graft opens

Updated 20 August 2018
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South Africa inquiry into top-level state graft opens

JOHANNESBURG: A judicial inquiry into alleged corruption at the top of government in South Africa is scheduled to open on Monday when the first public hearings begin.
The hearings by a panel led by the country’s second highest judge, Deputy Chief Justice Raymond Zondo, will probe allegations of corruption and fraud in the public sector during former president Jacob Zuma’s tenure.
Although the panel does not have powers to arrest or prosecute, evidence it collects can be used in any future prosecution.
Zuma appointed the judicial inquiry into the alleged graft in January on the orders of a high court.
A month later, on February 14, he was forced to resign from office as criticism grew from within the ruling ANC party over multiple corruption scandals.
State corruption in post-apartheid South Africa was first exposed formally two years ago by the country’s former ombudswoman Thuli Madonsela, who issued a damning report and called for a judicial inquiry into Zuma’s relationship with a wealthy business family.
Zuma was accused of being in the sway of the Guptas — a wealthy family of Indian origin — allegedly granting them influence over government appointments, contracts and state-owned businesses.
Pravin Gordhan, a former finance minister, but now responsible for state companies, has estimated that around 100 billion rand ($6.8 billion) of state funds may have been looted through corrupt practices.
Justice Zondo has vowed that the investigation into the so-called “state capture,” will be carried out thoroughly regardless of who is being investigated.
“I will investigate anybody and everybody no matter who he or she is. This commission will do its job properly. We owe that to the people of South Africa.” he said earlier this year.
The first witnesses to appear before the commission include a former deputy finance minister Mcebisi Jonas, an ANC lawmaker Mabel Mentor and the former government spokesman Themba Maseko.
The local Sunday Times said Zuma has been “invited” to appear before the panel, but the commission’s spokesman declined to comment on the newspaper report.
Initially tasked to probe and conclude its findings within six months, the commission has asked for an extension of up to two years.
Zuma’s successor as president, Cyril Ramaphosa, has vowed to crack down on government corruption, which he has admitted was a serious problem.
“I would hope that the inquiry gets to the bottom of how the South African state was captured in the way it was and what can be done to prevent this from happening again,” David Lewis, the executive director of South Africa’s non-profit organization Corruption Watch, said.