Merlino posts $5 Million bail, will remain on house arrest in FL

Reputed Philadelphia mob boss Joey Merlino has posted bail and is expected to be released from jail Friday afternoon, reports FOX 29's Dave Schratwieser.

Thanks to a number of friends who posted property and cash equity, Merlino will be on house arrest at his home in Boca Raton, Florida. Terms of his house arrest allow him to travel to New York for court, and Atlantic City, New Jersey to meet with his lawyer.

The 54-year-old Merlino is expected to be released from the Palm Beach County jail later Friday.

Merlino is charged with allegedly taking part in a health care fraud scheme where conspirators got corrupt doctors to bill insurers for unnecessary prescriptions for expensive compound creams in exchange for kickbacks.

Merlino, who lives in Boca Raton, was one of nearly four dozen reputed members of an East Coast crime syndicate who were charged last week with racketeering and various crimes including extortion, loansharking, casino-style gambling, sports gambling, credit card fraud and health care fraud. Federal prosecutors say the syndicate operated in New York, Massachusetts, Pennsylvania, Florida and New Jersey.

"I'm very happy to see this. It would have been very difficult to defend himself when you're locked up in a federal detention center," Merlino's attorney Edwin Jacobs said Friday.