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Jean Lopez is the trainer for his brother, Steven Lopez, who’s taekwondo’s largest famous person and essentially the most embellished athlete in that recreation.
USA TODAY Sports activities

Two-time Olympic champion Steven Lopez was once quickly suspended Monday through the U.S. Middle for SafeSport and USA Taekwondo pending solution of an investigation into sexual misconduct allegations.

Lopez was once already the topic of a SafeSport investigation that dates again greater than a 12 months, and was once below period in-between restrictions since June 19. However a lawsuit filed Friday in opposition to the U.S. Olympic Committee, USA Taekwondo and Lopez and his older brother and trainer, Jean, published new knowledge, stated Stephen Hess, legal professional for USA Taekwondo.

“The disclosure of extra sufferers and violations that fall throughout the scope of SafeSport’s investigation,” Hess advised USA TODAY Sports activities when requested the reasoning for the suspension.

 

Extra: Lawsuit accuses U.S. Olympic Committee of intercourse trafficking in abuse circumstances in opposition to Lopez brothers

Extra: Lopez brothers, Olympic taekwondo royalty, hit with intercourse abuse allegations

The lawsuit, filed through 4 ladies, accuses the Lopez brothers, USOC and USA Taekwondo of intercourse trafficking. The USOC and USA Taekwondo have been conscious since 1996 that the Lopez brothers had been sexual predators, in step with the lawsuit, however endured to ship younger ladies with them to competitions and camps the world over.

Steven Lopez is taekwondo’s largest famous person, profitable Olympic gold in 2000 and 2004 in addition to 5 international championships all over his occupation.  However for the previous 3 years, he and Jean Lopez had been below investigation for sexual misconduct, first through USA Taekwondo after which through SafeSport.

On April three, SafeSport declared Jean Lopez completely ineligible after discovering he had dedicated violations of sexual misconduct and sexual misconduct involving a minor. He’s interesting the verdict.

The investigation into lawsuits in opposition to Steven Lopez is now in its 15th month, well past the common of 63 days it takes SafeSport to unravel circumstances. Whilst he has been below period in-between restrictions, it wasn’t transparent what the ones had been. He competed on the international championships in overdue June and this 12 months competed within the U.S. Open and nationwide crew trials, the place he made his 24th nationwide crew.

He advised the Houston Chronicle this 12 months that he deliberate to compete within the Tokyo Olympics in 2020. However the suspension method he’s barred from any taekwondo-related job till SafeSport problems a choice in his case. 

“Whilst we can not touch upon a case in procedure, USA Taekwondo absolutely helps the essential paintings of the U.S. Middle for SafeSport and respects its unique jurisdiction over sexual misconduct issues,” USA Taekwondo stated in a remark. “We will be able to resolutely put into effect this fast suspension and some other sanction imposed through the Middle.” 

Final June, USA TODAY Sports activities reported that two ladies had accused Steven Lopez of rape or sexual attack. Mandy Meloon, a bronze medalist on the international championships in 1997 and 2005, stated she and Steven Lopez dated off and on for 6 years. In 2004, after a bodily disagreement at Lopez’s oldsters’ house, Meloon stated Steven Lopez adopted her to her rental, broke in via a window and sexually assaulted her.

Meloon stated Steven Lopez additionally bodily assaulted her on a number of events.

Amber Way, a former member of the junior nationwide crew, says she was once drugged 3 times and that Steven Lopez sexually assaulted her whilst she was once subconscious on a type of events. Way to start with asked anonymity when she spoke to USA TODAY Sports activities, however has since known herself publicly in a lawsuit she, Meloon and two different ladies filed in opposition to the Lopez brothers, the U.S. Olympic Committee and USA Taekwondo.

In an interview with USA TODAY Sports activities in June, Steven Lopez denied the allegations in opposition to him.

Requested if he’s ever sexually assaulted or dedicated any more or less beside the point conduct with any girl, Steven Lopez stated, “I’ve by no means — not anything, not anything in any respect. Not anything like that. Not anything with regards to that.”