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U.S. Will Pay $14.5M For Sex Abuse By Indian Health Service Doctor

The U.S. government reached a deal with victims of a pedophile doctor who sexually assaulted Native American boys for decades at federal hospitals in Montana and South Dakota, reports the Wall Street Journal. Under the the deal, the government would pay between $1.5 million and $2 million to each of eight victims to settle claims that federal officials ignored or tolerated the abuse. In total, the government would pay the victims about $14.5 million. The , one of the people said. The Indian Health Service (IHS) mishandling of the doctor's abuse was the subject of a 2019 documentary by the Journal and the PBS series Frontline.

Lawyers for the victims and Justice Department officials reached the deal after a meeting with mediators in Rapid City, S.D., in late September. The abusive doctor, Stanley Patrick Weber, arrived at the agency in 1986. His supervisors at the Browning, Mt. agency hospital suspected him of misconduct as early as the mid-1990s. Instead of firing him, the IHS transferred him to a hospital in Pine Ridge, S.D., where he worked for another 20 years as officials ignored warning signs and punished whistleblowers. Weber, now 73, was later convicted of abusing six victims covered by the pending settlement agreement and is serving a life prison sentence.

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