Lori Loughlin and Felicity Huffman are among 50 parents, elite college coaches, and executives charged in a national criminal conspiracy designed to get children into elite colleges, according to a federal indictment disclosed today.
Federal prosecutors said the elaborate cheating conspiracy involved parents paying a college-prep organization help their children pass entrance exams by taking the exam for their children or for correcting any wrong answers on the exams.
The organization then bribed athletic coaches at Yale, Stanford, and the University of Southern California, Wake Forest, Georgetown, among others, to admit students as recruited athletes under their sports programs, regardless of the level of athletic ability.
According to the documents, the elaborate scam included helping students pass entrance exams and create fraudulent sports achievements and personas to bolster entrance applications to obtain an unfair advantage over other applying students.
Arrests at the highest levels were made. Two SAT/ACT administrators, one exam proctor, one college administrators and nine college coaches at elite schools were taken into custody, US Attorney of Massachusetts Andrew Lelling said.
“This case is about the widening corruption of elite college admissions through the steady application of wealth combined with fraud,” Lelling said, “There can be no separate college admission system for the wealthy, and I’ll add that there will not be a separate criminal justice system either.”
“For every student admitted through fraud, an honest genuinely talented student was rejected,” Lelling said.
William Rick Singer, the founder of the college prep and counseling organization that the indictment revolves around, received roughly $25 million from parents to help get their children into elite schools, US attorney said.