Sentencing for college scandal leader

Published on January 4th, 2023

It was March 2019 when Scuttlebutt first reported on how the FBI and federal prosecutors had uncovered a massive bribery scheme to get students admitted to elite universities as recruited athletes and help them cheat on college entrance exams to gain admission.

This wasn’t a story that Scuttlebutt was eager to report, but when it implicated Stanford Sailing Team coach John Vandemoer, who became the first person to plead guilty, it became unavoidable.

Called Operation Varsity Blues, the scheme prompted a Netflix documentary and a book by Vandemoer, and now finally William ‘Rick’ Singer, the mastermind of the college admissions cheating scheme, was sentenced in federal court in Boston to three and a half years in prison on January 4, 2023.

Federal prosecutors identified Singer as the ringleader of a $25 million criminal enterprise that “massively corrupted the integrity of the college admissions process.”

He became a government informant after prosecutors began investigating his scheme in 2018 and pleaded guilty in 2019 to racketeering conspiracy, money laundering conspiracy, conspiracy to defraud the United States and obstruction of justice.

He received a longer sentence than anyone else involved in the investigation, but less than the six years that prosecutors recommended. Additionally, the judge imposed three years of supervised release and ordered to pay more than $19 million — about half as restitution to the IRS and the other half as forfeitures of money and assets. – Full story

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