Daily Briefs

Judge Neff tells prison to seize Nassar’s money for victims

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (AP) — A judge ordered the government to take money from the prison account of a former Michigan sports doctor who owes about $58,000 to victims of his child pornography crimes.

Larry Nassar has received about $13,000 in deposits since 2018, including $2,000 in federal stimulus checks, but has paid only $300 toward court-ordered financial penalties and nothing to his victims, prosecutors said.
He had a prison account balance of $2,041 in July.

“Because (Nassar) has received substantial non-exempt funds in his inmate trust account since incarceration, he was required by law to notify the court and the United States attorney and to apply those funds to the restitution that he still owed,” U.S. District Judge Janet Neff said Thursday.

In a court filing, Nassar said he had received “gifts” from “third parties.”

He said inmates should be paid a “living wage” for prison jobs so they can “make reasonable payments towards restitution.”

Nassar was a doctor at Michigan State University and USA Gymnastics, which trains Olympians. He pleaded guilty in federal court to child pornography crimes before pleading guilty in state court  to sexually assaulting female gymnasts.

Nassar is serving decades in prison.


Law student awarded scholarship from State Bar of Michigan Health Care Law Section

University of Detroit Mercy School of Law student Rita Soka received a scholarship from the State Bar of Michigan Health Care Law Section (HCLS). Each year, the HCLS awards one student from Detroit Mercy Law a scholarship recognizing their achievements in health care law. 

“My long-standing interest in health care is why I pursued an undergraduate degree in health science,” explained Soka. “Health care law extends this interest and allows me to exercise my intellectual reasoning and analytical skills.”

Soka worked for ten years as a clinical lab scientist in the largest hospitals in Metro Detroit. A native of Baghdad, Iraq, she learned the English language in college while raising her three children.

At Detroit Mercy Law, Soka is involved with the Women’s Law Caucus and the Moot Court Board of Advocates. She is a Dean’s Fellow and this fall will be a research assistant for a professor.

Soka worked as an associate law clerk at Secrest Wardle, a civil defense firm, this past summer. “At Secrest Wardle, I am dedicated to strengthening my litigation and advocacy skills to help solve my future clients’ issues, including assisting physicians in medical malpractice suits.”

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