Why are wealthy parents being charged? The 2019 college admissions bribery scandal, explained.
In 2019, a scandal arose over a criminal conspiracy to influence undergraduate admissions decisions at several top American universities. The investigation into the conspiracy was nicknamed Operation Varsity Blues. Thirty-three parents of college applicants are accused of paying more than $25 million between 2011 and 2018 to William Rick Singer, organizer of the scheme, who used part of the money to fraudulently inflate entrance exam test scores and bribe college officials. William faces up to 65 years in prison and a $1.25 M fine.
A total of 50 people have been charged in the investigations. This number includes 33 parents of college applicants and 11 named collegiate coaches or athletic administrators from eight universities. Many of these parents are celebrities and CEOs of private and public companies.
On Thursday, prosecutors announced that Ms. Loughlin, the actress who was one of the highest-profile people charged in the nation’s largest college admissions prosecution, had agreed to plead guilty and to serve two months in prison to conspiring to get her daughters admitted to the University of Southern California as crew recruits. Her husband, Mossimo Giannulli, a fashion designer, also agreed to plead guilty and is expected to serve five months.
WHAT ABOUT THE STUDENTS AND COLLEGES?
No students or schools have been charged. Authorities say many of the kids didn’t even know this was happening. a
college admissions scandal explained