U.S. District Judge A. Richard Caputo today gave final approval to the $17.75 million settlement in the ‚??kids for cash‚?Ě cases reached with real estate developer Robert Mericle.
The settlement calls for a basic benefit ranging from $500 to $5,000, dependent upon where and how long a juvenile was incarcerated. It also provides for additional ‚??enhanced‚?Ě benefits for juveniles who suffered more harm than others.
The approval clears the way for attorneys to begin the process to begin distributing the money to roughly 1,600 juveniles who made claims.
Mericle, who built two of the juvenile detention centers utilized by the county, was among numerous defendants in a class-action lawsuit filed by thousands of juveniles who alleged they were wrongly incarcerated by former judge Mark Ciavarella as part of a scheme to enrich Ciavarella and others.
For the complete story read Saturday‚??s Times Leader.