NEOSHO, Mo. (AP) — A judge has found the former owners of a southwest Missouri group home for the mentally disabled liable for a 2006 fire that killed 11 people.

The Joplin Globe reports Tuesday’s ruling clears the way for payment of $6.4 million in damages to victims and their families.

Attorneys for the plaintiffs and the former owners, Robert and Laverne DuPont, had agreed on the damages before the bench trial began last week in Newton County Circuit Court on a change of venue from McDonald County.

The DuPonts and their Joplin River of Life Ministries ran the Anderson Guest House. The fire in November 2006 killed 10 residents and one employee.

Fire investigators blamed faulty wiring as the likely cause. The DuPonts were convicted last year of federal health care fraud.

Copyright Associated Press


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