Multimillion-dollar verdict against Gosnell appears uncollectable

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 The former clinic of Philadelphia abortion doctor Kermit Gosnell is shown in 2010. (AP file photo)

The former clinic of Philadelphia abortion doctor Kermit Gosnell is shown in 2010. (AP file photo)

A Philadelphia judge has made a big award in a civil suit against Kermit Gosnell, but the award could be nothing more than a number.

Gosnell, a former doctor, was convicted of murder in 2013 for delivering and then killing babies at his now shuttered West Philadelphia clinic.

Now Common Pleas Judge Jacqueline Allen has awarded  $3.9 million to a woman whose mother died after getting an abortion at the clinic.

The award, against both Gosnell and the clinic, includes $3.25 million in punitive damages.The problem, said Gosnell’s lawyer, is that his client doesn’t have the money to pay the award.  Veteran defense attorney Chuck Peruto Jr. said he’s seen it happen many times.”I’ve had at least three of these cases where the verdicts were in excess of a million, and insurance companies don’t cover this because it was an intentional act,” he said.The $200,000 in cash found in a search of Gosnell’s properties is most likely long gone, Peruto said.”He had to pay lawyers, he had to pay fees to everyone else … there’s not going to be anything left,” he said.Gosnell is serving life in prison without parole for three first-degree murder convictions and one of involuntary manslaughter.  That conviction stems from the death in this lawsuit.

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