RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) — The third and final compensation payment has been mailed to sterilization victims, marking the end of a 15-year pursuit of financial help for people who suffered under North Carolina's eugenics program.

The state Department of Administration said in a news release that it mailed letters and an enclosed check of almost $10,500 to victims Thursday. Victims with approved claims received their first payment of $20,000 each in October 2014. A second payment of $15,000 each was mailed in November 2015.

About 7,600 people were sterilized under North Carolina's eugenics program before it ended in 1974. The N.C. Industrial Commission certified 220 victims.

The payments were made after a decision by the N.C. Court of Appeals rejecting arguments from the heirs of some victims about the law.

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