SCRANTON, Pa. — A former Pennsylvania judge went on trial in federal court on Tuesday, charged with racketeering, bribery and extortion in what prosecutors say was a $2.8 million scheme to send juvenile delinquents to privately run prisons.
The case against the judge, Mark A. Ciavarella Jr., who presided in Luzerne County, drew national attention for what legal experts say is a dangerous gap in the juvenile justice systems of many states — children appearing in court without lawyers.
Thank you to the people at Ohio’s Death Row on Blogger for bringing this to our attention –
Ohio prisons could soon become corporations if lawmakers pass a bill that would privatize up to half of the state’s correctional facilities. An e-mail sent by the Ernie Moore, the director of Ohio Department of Rehabilitation and Correction, warned workers of the possibility, 10 Investigates’ Paul Aker reported on Thursday. Supporters of the bill said privatizing prisons could save tax dollars, but the prison system’s union employees worry it means they will be out of work.