The University of California system reached a $243.6 million settlement with more than 200 women who alleged they were sexually abused by former UCLA obstetrician-gynecologist Dr. James Heaps, per NPR.

The 203 women said that they were groped or otherwise abused by Dr. James Heaps over his 35-year long career. The suit stated that the university ignored the complaints for decades and even deliberately concealed the abuse.

UCLA in a statement said: “The conduct alleged to have been committed by Heaps is reprehensible and contrary to the university’s values,” per NBC News.

  • “We express our gratitude to the brave individuals who came forward, and hope this settlement is one step toward providing healing and closure for the plaintiffs involved.”

According to CNN, Heaps’ attorney, Leonard Levine, in a previous statement said, “Heaps has maintained his innocence ever since he was first accused.”

A plantiffs’ attorney said: “This historic settlement allows these brave women to achieve their litigation goals of accountability and compensation, paving the path for their continued healing.”

  • “Instead of unnecessarily inflicting further damage upon these survivors, the UC Regents made the decision to resolve these claims for reasonable value, and I would like to recognize those efforts. This should serve as a model for other universities who are facing the same sort of claims.”

Last year, the University of Southern California agreed to a $852 million settlement with more than 700 women over another campus gynecologist, Dr. George Tyndall, according to USA Today.

More recently, the University of Michigan agreed to a $490 million settlement with more than 1,000 people who said they were sexually assaulted by the school’s sports doctor, Dr. Robert Anderson.

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