Woman in Adoption Scam Back in Florida

PORT ST. LUCIE, Fla. (AP) - Authorities say a woman who lied to adopt 11 disabled children from New York to get more than $1 million in subsidies has been returned to a Florida jail.

Judith Leekin is in the St. Lucie County jail on charges of aggravated child abuse and aggravated abuse of disabled adults.

She was sentenced in July in New York federal court to nearly 11 years in prison for fraud.

The 63-year-old woman is accused of treating the children like prisoners, beating and handcuffing them while they were in a locked
room without food in her Florida home. Authorities say she also deprived them of medical care and school. She has pleaded not guilty to the Florida charges. Her attorney is in plea discussions with prosecutors.

She was returned to Florida on Aug. 8.

(Copyright 2008 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)


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