School Closings And Delays

Will Mericle Prison Sentence Impact Development in Region?

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JENKINS TOWNSHIP – Questions about pending real estate development projects and contracting jobs started swirling on Friday, after word spread that the region’s most successful developer was sentenced to federal prison time for his role in the Kids for Cash scandal.

Court records show that Robert Mericle has been ordered to report to federal officials on June 2, for a year behind bars in prison.

People who work in real estate in Luzerne County said there could be a big ripple effect.

"Is his company still going to keep running? Will people want to work for him? It`s just stuff that has a big impact on the area because he covers a lot of territory. Mericle is a big company,” said Danny Miele. “A lot of companies are moving out of Northeastern (Pennsylvania). This don`t help it. People see that and they`re not going to want to come into the area.”

Several people who have worked with Mericle in the past told Newswatch 16 off camera, that Mericle is a hands-on boss and integral part of the operation, but he won’t allow his empire to grind to halt because he is locked up.

Officials at Mericle’s business office near Wilkes-Barre would not release any information about the company’s plans or who will be in charge when Robert Mericle is locked up.


  • bleh

    I love how the media portrays this as a negative, but the fact is this just makes room for another devoloper somewhere to do business in the area. This will do nothing but drive prices down for the area residents, as well as open opportunities for NEW skilled labor.

  • Ryan

    My favorite part (on top of the ridiculously light sentence, the man should be hung for all to see) is how he has until June 2nd to report to prison, proving once again, that the rules are very different for the wealthy.

    • jellystoneranger

      Just remember . Our great developer has not cheated the extended stay hotel just yet ! Just because Musto bowed out on cue , doesn’t mean the grand jury has disbanded . The Federalalies are very interested in the bribing of a state Senator . This is a bone the Feds are not giving up.

  • warren

    I still don’t understand. Isn’t the guy that pays the bribes as guilty as the guys that accept the bribes? He should have received the same as the rest of them.

  • jellystoneranger

    Corruption has to be dealt with swiftly and with prejudice in order to establish confidence with the people in regards to the judicial system . I give all the credit to the prosecutors and judge sticking to their guns against this obvious felon. This area does not need anymore greedy , self serving elitists who think they can steamroll the judicial system or buy the local politicos and get away with it. My sentence to Robbie would be your choice : 10 years in the big house or the federal govt confiscates your entire business and all assets including your blood money you have obtained by bribing Musto , the judges, Skrepenak and
    who knows else.

    A quick note to Mericle’s lawyer. You got a real set on you trying to tug on the heart strings of the judge with your BS about 200+ workers directly depending on him for their livelihood and another like number as subcontractors. Your lowlife client is responsible for that issue not whether the judge’s verdict places him in prison. Anybody that works for his organization has known for years who and what he is. They put their own welfare in his hands with full knowledge .

    A tip of my hat to the Feds . Keep up the good work boys . You haven’t even scratched the surface of corruption here !

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