Federal Court in Ciavarella “Kids For Cash” Case Issues Groundbreaking Ruling: State Court Judge’s Acts Not Immune from Conspiracy and RICO

California Coalition for Families and Children, PBC


January 13, 2014–A Federal District Court Judge in Pennsylvania ruled last Friday that “Kids for Cash” Pennsylvania State Juvenile Court Judge Mark Ciavarella’s actions in causing juveniles to be sentenced under a “zero tolerance” policy to further a civil conspiracy are not protected by judicial immunity.  United States District Judge A. Richard Caputo on Thursday issued a decision in favor of plaintiffs in that case, holding that Judge Mark Ciavarella’s acts in participating in a conspiracy to deprive children of a right to a fair trial in order to send the children to juvenile detention facilities which Ciavarella helped develop are not “judicial acts” entitled to judicial immunity.

What It Means for Parents and Children

“This decision will profoundly impact parents’ ability to pursue Family Court judges for civil rights violations based on judicial conduct occurring outside of the courtroom, which causes injury inside the courtroom.” says Colbern Stuart, President of…

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