13 March 2019
Court records unsealed in Boston on Tuesday revealed that 50 individuals, including actresses Felicity Huffman and Lori Loughlin, had been indicted in a nationwide college admissions bribery scam. Parents reportedly paid up to $6 million to gain their children admission into the top universities, including Yale, Stanford, Georgetown, Wake Forest, the University of Texas, Boston College, Boston University, North-eastern University, and the University of Southern California.
William Rick Singer, founder of a college prep business called the Key Worldwide Foundation, raked in $25 million over an eight-year period. Singer is accused of paying off college coaches to recruit students based on falsified athletic achievement. Singer pleaded guilty Tuesday to conspiracy charges for racketeering, money laundering and obstruction of justice. He had been cooperating since September.
Yale University’s former women’s soccer coach Rudolph Meredith has admitted to accepting bribes after prosecutors gathered evidence he took a $400,000 bribe to pretend that one prospective student was a recruit, but the student did not play competitive soccer.
The scheme was discovered accidentally by the FBI while working an unrelated undercover operation about a year ago, officials said. That tip led to a sprawling, nationwide corruption probe. Others arrested Tuesday include a private equity executive in northern California, a senior lawyer at a major law firm in New York, and a public relations executive in Los Angeles. Chicago Tribune reported.
Prosecutors also charged Georgetown’s former head tennis coach, Gordon Ernst. who made $950,000 promoting several students.