Consultant Rick Singer Sentenced In College Admissions Scandal
William “Rick” Singer has been sentenced to three years and six months in prison after being convicted of masterminding a scheme to get the children of his wealthy clients into the best universities. Singer must also pay $10 million in restitution to the federal government.
Prosecutors sought a minimum six-year sentence for the former college admissions consultant. However, Singer was given leniency for cooperating and giving authorities the names of his co-conspirators and clients. Rachel Rollins, who is the U.S. attorney for Massachusetts, said that without cooperation from Singer, her office might have prosecuted just 10 defendants instead of the 53 who were charged.
The parents who made payments to Singer reportedly believed that their payments were the same as making donations to universities.
Singer fostered relationships with coaches and athletic officials, many of whom he bribed to get admission spots for recruited athletes, officials say. Singer had a “side door” into schools like Yale, Stanford, USC, UCLA, and Georgetown, according to prosecutors.
Singer was accused of using staged photos and fake resumes filled with nonexistent accolades. Singer charged parents six figures for his services. He also allegedly took money in exchange for rigging exams. Officials say he would arrange for his clients’ children to take standardized admissions exams with proctors whom he paid to either correct mistakes on the exams or take the exams for the students.
Singer agreed in 2018 to help the government obtain evidence regarding his clients, collegiate coaches, and administrators who were involved, to show that they knew what they were doing was illegal. Singer would call people on recorded lines and talk about the bribes, the tests that were fixed and documents being falsified.
When Singer was charged in 2019, multiple parents, coaches and test administrators were also charged with crimes like racketeering, fraud and money laundering. Most pled guilty and their prison sentences ranged from weeks to months.
Among those arrested were several celebrities including actress Felicity Huffman and Lori Loughlin, from the popular television series Full House.
Singer’s attorneys fought for him to be punished with a year of house arrest, three years of probation and 750 hours of community service.
“For the rest of my life,” Singer wrote in a letter to the judge, “I have no expectation or desire to have the lifestyle I had when I was caught.”
Singer sold his home for $1.2 million and the proceeds all went to the government. He is currently spending his days teaching paddleboarding to veterans and children with autism.
LA Times has more HERE.