South Hutchinson A settlement for more than $250,000 has been approved for 117 people who received bad checks from the former owner of the Central Livestock Corp. sale barn.
Reno County District Judge Richard Rome approved the settlement Friday that will distribute the money to all but eight ranchers who chose not to participate in a class-action lawsuit against former owner Mac Frederick.
The barn has been closed since Feb. 14, when auditors with the U.S. Department of Agriculture began investigating its finances and cattlemen complained about the bad checks.
Attorney Stan Juhnke told the court that 91 people had taken part in his class-action lawsuit, with another 18 who had not responded to his mailings.
The proposal, which also was approved by Central Livestock's attorney, Terry Bruce, will reimburse the ranchers for about 85 percent of the total owed by the sale barn.
Rome also approved about $12,000 in bad check fees and $350 in expenses, bringing the total judgment to more than $260,000.