A massive federal indictment was announced on Tuesday, charging dozens of parents, coaches and college prep executives of carrying out a national conspiracy to get students into prestigious colleges and schools.
Among the celebrities, actresses Felicity Huffman and Lori Loughlin along with coaches from Yale, Stanford, Texas, USC, Wake Forest and Georgetown among others.
The reason for the alleged scam? To help students get into college as recruited athletes, regardless of athletic ability. It also alleges that a third party took standardized tests such as the ACT and SAT in place of students. Court documents also allege that some defendants in the case created fake athletic profiles for students in order to make them appear like successful athletes and get into college.
Huffman, best known for her role on “Desperate Housewives,” is accused of paying $15,000 to an organization that then facilitated cheating for her daughter on the SATs. There are also recorded phone calls where Huffman discussed the scheme with a cooperating witness according to the indictment. She and Loughlin (“Fuller House”) have been charged with felony conspiracy to commit mail fraud and honest services mail fraud.
Parents paid a man, William Rick Singer, who founded The Edge College & Career Network, also known as The Key and The Key Worldwide Foundation between $15,000 and $75,000 to have another person take exams for their children. According to court documents, parents paid Singer around $25 million between 2011 and February 2019 to “bribe coaches and university administrators to designate their children as recruited athletes, or other favored admissions categories.”