"Kids for Cash" is an apt description of the (hopefully) last episode in the unfortunate legal careers of Michael T. Conahan and Mark A. Ciavarella Jr.. Those two judges have the distinction of taking $2.6 million from Pensylvnnia Child Care---a juvenile detention facility---in exchange for sending kids to them without the benefit of appropriate hearings. Not just without the benefit of hearings, but with the benefit of "pretend" hearings conducted by Ciavarella where the juvenile offenders were denied counsel.
In U.S. law judges are partially protected from liability for decisions made on the bench, so the two perps in this case may only get part of the punishment they deserve for their actions. The best outcome, beyond what litigation brings, may be for the names Conohan and Ciavarella to become synonymous with the failure of judicial ethics.
- Juvenile Law Center page
- law.com 1, law.com 2