BOSTON (TIP): In March 2019, dozens of people were arrested in a nationwide college admissions scam that facilitated cheating on college entrance exams and the admission of students to elite universities as purported athletic recruits. Athletic coaches from Yale, Stanford, USC, Wake Forest and Georgetown, among others as well as parents and exam administrator were arrested by federal agents in multiple states on March 12 and charged in federal court in Boston. Actresses Lori Loughlin and Felicity Huffman were the high-profile parents charged in the alleged scam.
Now according to a report published in The New York Times, prosecutors are pursuing a new set of parents in the college admissions scandal including some celebrity parents in Los Angeles. The prosecutors have informed some of the parents that they are under investigation and the lead prosecutor conferred with lawyers for at least two of these parents during a trip to Los Angeles in April, the report says.
William “Rick” Singer, 58, of Newport Beach, Calif., was the mastermind of the racketeering conspiracy and many of his clients were in the Los Angeles area.
According to the charging documents, Singer facilitated cheating on the SAT and ACT exams for his clients by instructing them to seek extended time for their children on college entrance exams, which included having the children purport to have learning disabilities in order to obtain the required medical documentation. Once the extended time was granted, Singer allegedly instructed the clients to change the location of the exams to one of two test centers: a public high school in Houston, Texas, or a private college preparatory school in West Hollywood, Calif.
It is further alleged that throughout the conspiracy, parents paid Singer approximately $25 million to bribe coaches and university administrators to designate their children as purported athletic recruits, thereby facilitating the children’s’ admission to those universities.
Hollywood actress Lori Loughlin and her husband designer Mossimo Giannulli have pleaded not guilty in the case while actress Felicity Huffman has admitted to paying a college counselor $15,000 to arrange for cheating on her daughter’s SAT test.