Powerball winner resolves $30k child support debt

PATERSON, N.J. (AP) — The New Jersey man who won a $338 million Powerball jackpot has resolved a child support debt.

Pedro Quezada appeared Monday afternoon in state Superior Court in Paterson.

Authorities had said the 44-year-old Passaic resident owed about $29,000 in back support for three of his five children.

During the court hearing, officials said Quezada had paid $30,000 to settle the debt. He also told the judge in Spanish that the three children would now be living with him.

During the hearing, state Superior Court Judge Ernest Caposela commended Quezada for taking care of the back child support, but noted that he will still be obligated to pay support in amount that could be modified.

Currently, Quezada is responsible for $141 per week for three children.

Caposela said either Quezada or the mother of the children could apply for a modification of the child support amount.

“There are going to be a lot of people who are going to ask you to invest in things because of your good fortune,” Caposela told Quezada, “but investing in your children is the wisest investment you can make.”

Quezada claimed a lump-sum payment last week worth $221 million, or about $152 million after taxes.

Quezada left the courthouse without commenting, but his lawyer, Paul Fernandez, said his client wanted to put the matter behind him and move on with his life.

“He plans to do what’s conservative, he plans to do what’s right for his children,” said Fernandez, whose law offices are in Paterson. “He’s a family man.”

When asked about reports that Quezada had offered to pay his neighbors’ rents for a month or two, Fernandez said that was “just a rumor,” but didn’t elaborate.

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