U.S. federal prosecutors on Tuesday charged dozens of people in a years-old, $25 million US scheme to help wealthy Americans, including actors Felicity Huffman and Lori Loughlin, buy their children’s way into elite schools such as Yale, Georgetown and Stanford universities.
Federal prosecutors in Boston charged William (Rick) Singer, 58, with running the racketeering scheme through his Edge College & Career Network, which served a roster of clients, including CEOs and Hollywood actors.
Prosecutors said Singer’s operation arranged for fake testers to take college admissions exams in place of his clients’ children, and in some cases arranged for applicants to be listed as recruited athletes even if they had no athletic ability.
Singer is scheduled to plead guilty on Tuesday in Boston federal court to charges, including racketeering, money laundering and obstruction of justice, according to court papers. He could not be reached for immediate comment.
Some 33 parents, including Huffman and Loughlin, were charged, as well as 13 coaches and associates of Singer’s business.
Prosecutors said that on a call with one parent, Singer summed up his business thusly: “What we do is help the wealthiest families in the U.S. get their kids into school … my families want a guarantee.”