A judge ordered Wanetta Gibson, who falsely accused NFL player Brian Banks of rape
while they were students at Long Beach Poly High School, to pay a $2.6 million judgment, The Long Beach Press-Telegram reported Friday.
Wanetta Gibson, who recanted the alleged rape in 2002 that put Banks in prison, was ordered to pay a $1.5 million, plus an additional $1.1 million in fees to the school, including for making a false claim and court-related costs, the Long Beach Press Telegram reported.
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Gibson had received a $750,000 settlement from the school district in the case in 2002, the Press-Telegram reported. The district is attempting to recoup the settlement, attorney fees, interest, and punitive damages.
"The court recognizes that our school district was a victim in this case," Long Beach Unified Superintendent Christopher J. Steinhauser told the Press-Telegram. "This judgment demonstrates that when people attempt to defraud our school system, they will feel the full force of the law."
Gibson later recanted the rape claim on tape, paving the way for Banks' exoneration of the charge. At that point, however, he had already served more than five years in prison.
Banks signed a contract earlier this year to play football for the Atlanta Falcons.
Greg Mellen of the Press-Telegram reported that California court records show that Gibson filed a number of claims, including temporary restraining orders and domestic violence charges, and had claims filed against her since she received the initial settlement.
Wanetta Gibson has not appeared in court throughout the proceedings and her whereabouts were not know. She did not have a representative in court either, but the ruling allows the school district to recoup the money through her future wages and property.
Banks fought for years for his innocence, but he wasn't exonerated until May of 2012. Gibson contacted him on Facebook and sent him a friend request. Later, they met face to face and Gibson admitted she lied and wanted to help Banks clear his name
, KABC-TV reported.
On the tape, which a private investigator recorded, Gibson said she was concerned about paying the settlement, even though she wanted to help Banks, according to the Press-Telegram.
"I will go through with helping you, but all that money they gave us, I mean, gave me, I don't want to have to pay it back, all of it, because that would take a long time," Gibson said, according to the recording.
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