"Prosecutors: ’Kids for cash’ figure breaches deal
Robert K. Mericle has failed to live up to his obligations under a plea deal, the U.S. attorney’s office said in court papers filed in Scranton. Prosecutors asked a judge to hold a hearing on the matter.
Federal prosecutors accused two Luzerne County judges of taking more than $2 million in kickbacks from Mericle, the builder of a pair of for-profit youth detention centers. Former Judges Mark Ciavarella Jr. and Michael Conahan are serving lengthy prison sentences for their roles in the “kids for cash” scandal.
Mericle, who pleaded guilty to failing to report a felony, is scheduled to be sentenced Feb. 26. ....
The Pennsylvania Supreme Court threw out thousands of juvenile convictions after the judges were charged in 2009."