L.A. Jewish cemetery settles class-action suit for $80.5 million

(JTA) — A Los Angeles Jewish cemetery accused of dumping remains to make room for new interments has settled a 25,000-person class action lawsuit.

Eden Memorial Park in Missions Hills, Calif., agreed to a settlement worth about $80.5 million, the Los Angeles Jewish Journal reported, citing documents filed in Los Angeles Superior Court on Feb. 27.

The lawsuit was filed in 2009. It claimed that Eden Memorial Park, one of the largest Jewish cemeteries in the United States, instructed groundskeepers to “secretly break concrete vaults with a backhoe and remove, dump and/or discard the human remains, including human skulls, to make room for new interments.” The alleged incidents began as early as 1985.

About 40,000 people are buried in the 72-acre cemetery.

The settlement will be finalized in mid-May. The case went to trial last month in the Los Angeles Superior Courthouse.

Eden Memorial Park is owned and operated by SCI California, a subsidiary of Texas-based Service Corporation International (SCI), the  largest operator of cemeteries and funeral services in the United States.

 

 

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