Actresses Huffman, Loughlin among 50 charged in U.S. college fraud scheme

13 March, 2019, 01:30 | Author: Dominic Spencer
  • Lori Loughlin Charged in Bribery Scheme Bragged About Daughter Getting Into College

"These parents are a catalogue of wealth and privilege", United States attorney Andrew Lelling said at a news conference.

"Some simply never showed up" to play, Lelling said of the students.

Federal court records unsealed Tuesday in Boston name 50 people who have been indicted as part of the nationwide scheme, according to a release from the U.S. Attorney's Office in MA. When federal agents went to the actress' Los Angeles home on Tuesday morning, she was not there.

Full House star Lori Loughlin, who played Aunt Becky on the beloved sitcom, and Felicity Huffman were among 50 people charged in an Federal Bureau of Investigation probe of the NCAA, ABC reports.

As for Huffman, she and her husband, William H. Macy, allegedly made a charitable contribution of $15,000 to participate in a college entrance exam cheating scheme on behalf of their eldest daughter.

It's alleged that she arranged to use the scheme again for her younger daughter, but decided against it.

Officials say the sprawling, nationwide corruption probe dubbed Operation Varsity Blues was sparked when someone being interviewed for an unrelated case tipped authorities off.

Huffman is perhaps best known for her role as Lynette Scavo on the ABC dramedy Desperate Housewives, for which she won an Emmy Award for Best Actress.

Some 33 parents, including Huffman and Loughlin, were charged, as well as 13 coaches and associates of Singer's business.


"What we do is help the wealthiest families in the U.S. get their kids into school.my families want a guarantee", he allegedly said.

When wealthy donors do things like donate a wing of a building or offer large gifts to a university, it's usually legal, Knowlton says. Basically rich people paid him a ton to bribe and defraud their kids into colleges they couldn't otherwise get accepted to.

He called it the biggest college admissions scam ever prosecuted by the U.S. Justice Department.

The coach, Rudolph Meredith, resigned in November after 24 years running the women's soccer team.

According to the complaint, the defendants conspired with others to "bribe college entrance exam administrators to facilitate cheating on college entrance exams, to bribe varsity coaches and administrators at elite universities to designate certain applicants as recruited athletes or as other favoured candidates, thereby facilitating the applicants' admission to those universities and to use the facade of a charitable organization to hide the nature and source of the bribe payments".

How did the alleged scheme work?

The racketeering conspiracy charges were brought against coaches at schools including Wake Forest, Stanford, Georgetown, the University of Southern California and University of California, Los Angeles.

Singer facilitated the cheating by advising students to seek "extended time on the exams, including by having their children purport to have learning disabilities in order to obtain medical documentation that ACT", the indictment says.

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