Former USA Gymnastics doctor Larry Nassar pleaded guilty Wednesday to seven counts of first-degree criminal sexual conduct with minors he was medically treating.
Nassar admitted that he used his power as a doctor to sexually abuse underage girls, including several of the 2012 women’s gymnastics team, dubbed the "Fierce Five,” who won the gold medal during the Summer Olympics in London.
In total, more than 140 women have accused Nassar of sexually abusing them while under his medical care.
Six of the charges the former doctor faced applied to victims under the age of 15 years old. According to ESPN, the charges will each come with a minimum of at least 25 years in prison and a maximum of life in prison. Other charges were either reduced or dismissed in a plea deal.
"You used that position of trust that you had in the most vile way to abuse children," Judge Rosemarie Aquilina told Nassar before a crowded Michigan courtroom on Wednesday.
Nassar offered an apology, likening the matter to a "forest fire out of control."
"For all those involved, I'm so horribly sorry that this was like a match that turned into a forest fire out of control," he said. "I have no animosity toward anyone. I just want healing.”
In October, Olympic gold medalist McKayla Maroney came forward accusing Nassar of sexual assault while she was 13 years old, adding that she was inspired to speak out after multiple women told their own stories of alleged abuse from Hollywood producer Harvey Weinstein.