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LA schools settle claims over lewd 'tasting games'

LOS ANGELES (AP) -- The Los Angeles school district will pay millions of dollars to settle claims and lawsuits filed by students and families from an elementary school where a third-grade teacher was accused of spoon-feeding children semen in what he called "tasting games," lawyers in the cases said Tuesday. District officials did not reveal the total amount of the settlement, but attorney Raymond Boucher, who represents several Miramonte Elementary School students, said each claimant will receive $470,000.

District General Counsel David Holmquist said the settlement covers 58 of the 191 claims and lawsuits filed by students and parents against the district after the January 2012 arrest of former third-grade teacher Mark Berndt on 23 charges of lewd behavior spanning five years at Miramonte. A few of the cases involved another Miramonte teacher, Martin Springer, who was charged with lewd acts on a child in a case involving a second-grader that authorities said was fondled in class in 2009.  

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