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College admissions scandal: Here is everyone charged in the case

Clockwise from top left; Mossimo Giannulli and Lori Loughlin; William “Rick” Singer; Felicity Huffma
Dozens of celebrities and high-profile people have been caught up in the college admissions scandal.
(EPA / Shutterstock / AP / Getty Images / L.A. Times)

They include Hollywood actresses, former CEOs, a famed parenting book writer, a fashion icon, a Newport Beach college counselor and university athletic officials.

In a college admissions scandal brought to light Tuesday, federal prosecutors allege wealthy parents paid to help their children cheat on college entrance exams and to falsify athletic records of students to enable them to secure admission to elite schools, including UCLA, USC, Stanford, Yale and Georgetown.

Here is a full list of those charged:

William ‘Rick’ Singer

Racketeering conspiracy; money laundering conspiracy; conspiracy to defraud the U.S.; obstruction of justice.

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William Singer
William “Rick” Singer founder of the Edge College & Career Network, departs federal court in Boston on Tuesday.
(Steven Senne / Associated Press)

Singer, who owns a for-profit Newport Beach college admissions company, is at the center of the scheme, according to court documents. Wealthy parents paid to have him and others facilitate their children’s cheating on college entrance exams and admission to elite universities as athletes, regardless of whether they played the sport, prosecutors allege.

Singer, of Sacramento and Newport Beach, owned Edge College & Career Network and was also CEO of the Key Worldwide Foundation, which he formed in 2012 to provide education to underprivileged students. Prosecutors allege that Singer instructed parents to make payments to the fake charity under the guise of charitable donations.

Singer cooperated with authorities in the investigation and pleaded guilty to the charges in Boston on Tuesday afternoon.

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Rudolph ‘Rudy’ Meredith

Conspiracy to commit wire fraud and honest services wire fraud; honest services wire fraud.

In a September 2016 photo, Yale’s women’s head soccer Coach Rudy Meredith gives pointers to players
Rudy Meredith in 2016.
(Doug Engle / Star-Banner via Associated Press)

Meredith of Madison, Conn., was employed as the head women’s soccer coach at Yale University until November 2018. He is accused of accepting bribes in exchange for designating applicants as athletic recruits for the college’s soccer team, and gaining them admission to the university.

“Yale has been the victim of a crime perpetrated by a former coach who no longer works at the university,” Peter Salovey, president of Yale, said in a statement emailed to the campus community.

Salovey added that he does not believe that any other member of the school’s administration or staff knew about the conspiracy.

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Mark Riddell

Conspiracy to commit mail fraud and honest services mail fraud; conspiracy to commit money laundering.

Riddell served as the director of college entrance exam preparation at IMG Academy in Bradenton Fla., where he has worked since 2006. He was allegedly involved with the scheme since 2011, according to court filings.

Prosecutors allege administrators allowed Riddell to take students’ exams for them, feed correct answers to students or review and correct tests after they had been completed. He was allegedly paid $10,000 per test he doctored, according to court documents.

Riddell “assists thousands of students in gaining admission to top American universities,” according to his biography on IMG Academy’s website.

At a news conference Tuesday, U.S. Atty. for Massachusetts Andrew Lelling described Riddell as “just a really smart guy,” according to ABC News.

“He didn’t have inside information about the answers, he was just smart enough to get a near perfect score on demand or to calibrate the score,” Lelling said.

Full coverage: Dozens charged — including Hollywood actresses — in connection with college admissions scheme »

John Vandemoer

Conspiracy to commit racketeering.

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College Prep Chief William “Rick” Singer Charged In College Admissions Fraud Scheme
Stanford sailing coach John Vandemoer arrives at Boston Federal Court for an arraignment on Tuesday.
(Scott Eisen / Getty Images)

Vandemoer was a sailing coach at Stanford University. He is accused of recommending two prospective students — children of Singer’s clients — as recruits for the college’s sailing team in exchange for payment to Stanford sailing, according to court documents.

Prosecutors allege Vandemoer accepted a total of $270,000 in contributions to the Stanford sailing program.

Ultimately, the students Vandemoer referred did not attend Stanford. Vandemoer has agreed to plead guilty to a charge of racketeering conspiracy, and was fired Tuesday.

Stanford released a statement saying the school has been cooperating with the investigation, that it has no evidence the alleged conduct involves anyone else at Stanford, and that it will be undertaking an internal review.

Vandemoer was in his 11th year as Stanford’s head sailing coach for the 2018-19 season.

Igor Dvorskiy and Lisa ‘Niki’ Williams

Conspiracy to commit racketeering.

Igor Dvorskiy was director of the West Hollywood College Preparatory School and Lisa “Niki” Williams was an assistant teacher at a Houston high school. Both Dvorskiy and Williams were also test administrators for the College Board and ACT who are accused of facilitating cheating.

The way the scheme usually worked, according to court documents, is that parents would ask for extended time for their children on college entrance exams, including the ACT and SAT. They were allegedly encouraged to fabricate reasons for their children to take the exam either at a public high school in Houston or at the private West Hollywood prep school where Dvorskiy worked.

Prosecutors allege that at those two test centers, administrators Williams in Houston and Dvorskiy in West Hollywood were bribed to allow Riddell to take exams for students, feed correct answers to students or doctor tests after the fact.

Gordon Ernst

Conspiracy to commit racketeering.

Gordon Ernst was the head tennis coach at Georgetown University until 2018. Prosecutors allege he accepted bribes to designate applicants as tennis recruits in order for them to gain admission to Georgetown.

The Georgetown Voice reports that university vice presidents sent an email to the student body saying Ernst had been placed on leave following an internal investigation, and eventually left Georgetown in 2018. But a press release from July 2018 about Ernst’s resignation did not mention any violation of university rules, and was removed from the school’s website early Tuesday afternoon, according to the Georgetown Voice.

After leaving Georgetown, Ernst took a position as a coach for the University of Rhode Island’s women’s tennis team. Ernst was inducted into the New England Tennis Hall of Fame in 2015.

William Ferguson

Conspiracy to commit racketeering.

Ferguson, of Winston-Salem, N.C., has been head women’s volleyball coach at Wake Forest University since 2016. On Tuesday, the university placed Ferguson on administrative leave and hired legal counsel to review the matter.

Martin Fox

Conspiracy to commit racketeering.

Martin Fox is president of a private tennis academy and camp in Houston. He is accused of brokering bribes in exchange for payment.

Fox allegedly received a check from the Key Worldwide Foundation for introducing Singer to Michael Center, the head coach of the men’s tennis team at the University of Texas at Austin, according to the complaint. Prosecutors allege he was also paid to facilitate bribes for a varsity coach at the University of San Diego.

Fox was separately indicted by a grand jury in Massachusetts on a charge of conspiracy to commit racketeering, according to the complaint.

Donna Heinel

Conspiracy to commit racketeering.

Heinel was a senior associate athletic director at USC. She allegedly received bribes totaling more than $1.3 million in exchange for falsely designating applicants as athletic recruits to gain them admission to USC. She was fired by the university on Tuesday.

Laura Janke and Ali Khosroshahin

Conspiracy to commit racketeering.

Ali Khosroshahin was USC women’s soccer coach before he was fired in 2013. Laura Janke was his assistant coach of women’s soccer before she left USC in 2014.

Both were named in the indictment for allegedly fabricating athlete profiles for applicants. They allegedly received payments totaling nearly $350,000 sent to their private soccer club.

Singer allegedly directed Janke to draft a false profile for one client’s daughter and a basketball profile for another.

“Let me know if you want me to add any other awards to her profile or if you think that is enough,” Janke wrote in an email to Singer when she sent a draft of a profile, according to the complaint.

Steven Masera

Conspiracy to commit racketeering.

Steven Masera, of Folsom, Calif., was an accountant and financial officer for the Edge College & Career Network as well as the Key Worldwide Foundation until December 2017. Effectively Singer’s bookkeeper, he is is accused of collecting money from parents under the guise of charitable donations as part of the scheme.

Jorge Salcedo

Conspiracy to commit racketeering.

UCLA Men’s Soccer coach, Jorge Salcedo during a game versus San Diego State University, Drake Stadiu
Jorge Salcedo is shown during a UCLA game in 2014.
(Don Liebig / UCLA Athletics)

Jorge Salcedo was the head coach of UCLA men’s soccer. He allegedly accepted $200,000 for facilitating the enrollment of two students, falsely designating them as soccer players, though they did not play competitively. He was placed on leave by the school Tuesday morning.

11 lies uncovered in the college admissions scam: a phony coxswain, made-up learning disabilities and fictional athletes »

Mikaela Sanford

Conspiracy to commit racketeering.

Mikaela Sanford was an employee of Singer’s who served in various roles at Edge College & Career Network and the Key Worldwide Foundation. Sanford allegedly helped fabricate athletic profiles and secretly took classes for some students so that the grades she earned could be submitted to colleges as part of their applications, according to the complaint.

David Sidoo

Conspracy to commit mail and wire fraud.

David Sidoo is a Vancouver businessman and former Canadian Football League player. He is accused of making two $100,000 payments to have others pose as his two sons to take exams, including the SAT and Canadian high school graduation exam.

His older son, Dylan Sidoo, was admitted to Chapman University in 2012, after his SAT score was emailed to a Chapman administrator, according to the indictment.

Dylan Sidoo attended Chapman University until 2014, when he transferred out to attend USC. The younger son, Jordan Sidoo, was admitted to UC Berkeley in 2014, where he joined the rowing program. Neither of the sons were named in the indictment.

Jovan Vavic

Conspiracy to commit racketeering.

Jovan Vavic
USC water polo coach Jovan Vavic was fired Tuesday.
(Brian van der Brug / Los Angeles Times)

Vavic was the men’s and women’s water polo coach at USC. He allegedly accepted bribes totaling more than $250,000 in exchange for falsely designating students as recruited athletes to help them gain admission. He was fired Tuesday.

Gregory Abbott and Marcia Abbott

Conspiracy to commit mail fraud and honest services mail fraud.

Gregory Abbott is the founder and chairman of a food and beverage packaging company, according to court records. He and his wife, Marcia Abbott, are residents of New York City and Aspen, Colo.

The Abbotts are accused of paying $50,000 under the guise of a charitable donation for their daughter to participate in the cheating scheme.

Gamal Abdelaziz

Conspiracy to commit mail fraud and honest services mail fraud.

Abdelaziz, of Las Vegas, was a senior executive of a resort and casino operator in Macau until 2016. He’s accused of conspiring to bribe Donna Heinel, who until Tuesday was a senior associate athletic director at USC, to designate his daughter as a recruit for the basketball team to ease her admission to the school.

To get his daughter into the school, he allegedly wired $300,000 in March 2018 as a purported charitable contribution, and also began making payments of $20,000 per month to Heinel personally, according to the complaint.

Diane Blake and Todd Blake

Conspiracy to commit mail fraud and honest services mail fraud.

The Blakes are a married couple from Ross, Calif. Diane Blake is the co-founder of Winston Retail Solutions, a retail merchandising firm. She previously founded the marketing firm Blake Marketing Inc., and worked as director of retail marketing and merchandising for Levi Strauss & Co., according to her LinkedIn page. Todd Blake is an entrepreneur and investor, according to the complaint.

Jane Buckingham

Conspiracy to commit mail fraud and honest services mail fraud.

Buckingham, of Los Angeles, is the chief executive of a marketing company. Bloomberg describes her as a “lifestyle guru and marketing consultant frequently quoted in television and newspaper interviews as a self-proclaimed millennial expert.”

She is accused of agreeing to make a $50,000 payment to the Key Worldwide Foundation in exchange for someone taking the ACT for her son. According to the complaint, on a call with Singer, Buckingham said she would “probably like to do the same thing” for her daughter because she is “not a great test taker.”

Gordon Caplan

Conspiracy to commit mail fraud and honest services mail fraud.

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Gordon Caplan walks out of federal court March 12, 2019, in New York.
(Julie Jacobson / Associated Press)

Caplan, of Greenwich, Conn., and New York is an attorney and co-chairman of the law firm Willkie Farr & Gallagher. He is accused of making a $75,000 payment under the guise of a charitable donation for his daughter to participate in the cheating scheme.

He allegedly took his daughter to a psychologist in Los Angeles in order to get medical documentation she would need to receive extended time for an entrance exam. Singer told Caplan that his daughter needed “to be stupid” when a psychologist evaluated her for a learning disability.

The ACT twice denied his daughter’s request for extended time before ultimately granting it at the request of law enforcement officials investigating the scheme, according to the complaint.

In a phone call, Singer suggested Caplan hire someone to take classes for his daughter to improve her grades.

Caplan’s wife voiced concerns on the call, saying she had a “problem with that,” according to the complaint.

Caplan picked up the phone to speak privately to Singer, and asked, “If somebody catches this, what happens?”

“The only one who can catch it is if you guys tell somebody,” Singer said.

“I am not going to tell anybody,” Caplan said, both laughing, according to the complaint.

Michael Center

Conspiracy to commit mail fraud and honest services mail fraud.

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Michael Center at the United States Federal Courthouse in Austin, Texas, March 12, 2019.
(Ricardo B. Brazziell / Associated Press)

Center was the head coach of the men’s tennis team at the University of Texas at Austin.

He was accused of accepting bribes in exchange for designating students as athletic recruits and facilitating their admission to the university, according to the complaint.

He was placed on leave from the university on Tuesday.

I-Hsin ‘Joey’ Chen

Conspiracy to commit mail fraud and honest services mail fraud.

Chen, of Newport Beach, runs a company that provides warehousing and other services for the shipping industry. Chen is accused of paying $75,000 in exchange for his son’s participation in the cheating scheme, according to court documents.

Amy Colburn and Gregory Colburn

Conspiracy to commit mail fraud and honest services mail fraud.

The Colburns are a married couple from Palo Alto. Gregory Colburn is a radiation oncologist in San Jose who has been practicing medicine for more than 20 years. He received his medical degree from UCLA’s David Geffen School of Medicine.

Robert Flaxman

Conspiracy to commit mail fraud and honest services mail fraud.

Flaxman, a Beverly Hills resident, is chief executive and co-founder of Crown Realty & Development, a real estate development company. According to his Facebook page, he attended USC.

Mossimo Giannulli and Lori Loughlin

Conspiracy to commit mail fraud and honest services mail fraud.

Gq Celebrates ‘Men of the Year’ 2005, Mr. Chow Restaurant in Beverly Hills, America - 01 Dec 2005
Mossimo Giannulli and Lori Loughlin in 2005.
(A Rodriguez / BEI/REX/Shutterstock)

Giannuli is a fashion designer and creator of clothing brand Mossimo; Loughlin is an actress famous for her role on “Full House.” The couple allegedly agreed to pay $500,000 bribes to have their two daughters recruited to the USC rowing team (even though neither of them actually rows) in order to gain admission to the school, according to the complaint.

A cooperating witness told the couple their younger daughter’s crew profile would show their daughter, falsely, as a coxswain for the L.A. Marina Club team, and asked for an “action picture,” according to the complaint. In response, Giannuli sent a picture of their younger daughter on an ergometer, an indoor rowing machine.

In 2017, a guidance counselor from the high school their daughters attended did not believe they rowed and raised concerns that their applications might have misleading information, according to the complaint.

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Manuel Henriquez and Elizabeth Henriquez

Conspiracy to commit mail fraud and honest services mail fraud.

Manuel Henriquez is the founder, chairman and CEO of Hercules Capital, a publicly traded specialty finance company based in Palo Alto. Manuel Henriquez and his wife, Elizabeth Henriquez, live in Atherton, Calif.

The couple allegedly participated in the college entrance scheme multiple times for their two daughters.

Manuel Henriquez allegedly was supposed to be billed $75,000 at one point, but instead of paying for the cheating, he agreed to use his influence at Northeastern University, where he is an alum and former member of one of the university’s governing bodies, to secure admission for an unnamed applicant, according to the complaint.

The Henriquezes are also accused of conspiring to bribe Gordon Ernst, the head tennis coach at Georgetown, to enlist their older daughter as a tennis recruit to ease her admission to the university.

Douglas Hodge

Conspiracy to commit mail fraud and honest services mail fraud.

Hodge is a Laguna Beach-based investor. Hodge previously led Pimco, a large investment management company based in Newport Beach.

Felicity Huffman

Conspiracy to commit mail fraud and honest services mail fraud.

Felicity Huffman
Actress Felicity Huffman attends the 69th Primetime Emmy Awards in Los Angeles.
(Jordan Strauss / Invision / Associated Press)

Huffman, actress in the hit ABC show “Desperate Housewives,” is accused of participating in the cheating scheme for her oldest daughter. The daughter allegedly took the SAT in December 2017 and got a 1420, bumping up 400 points from her first test.

Huffman, who lives in Los Angeles, allegedly made initial arrangements to do the same for her younger daughter, but according to the complaint, in February, she spoke with a cooperating witness expressing concern about whether the jump in her daughter’s SAT test scores would raise suspicion with her SAT tutor.

She eventually decided not to participate in the scheme for her younger daughter, according to court documents.

Will children at center of college admissions scandal pay a price along with their parents? »

Felicity Huffman awoke to FBI agents with guns drawn at her L.A. home in college cheating raid »

Agustin Huneeus Jr.

Conspiracy to commit mail fraud and honest services mail fraud.

Huneeus, of San Francisco, owns Huneeus Vintners, a portfolio of vineyards in Napa and elsewhere.

He is accused of participating in the cheating scheme on behalf of his daughter and conspiring to bribe Heinel and Vavic at USC to get his daughter into the school as a water polo recruit, according to the complaint.

Bruce Isackson and Davina Isackson

Conspiracy to commit mail fraud and honest services mail fraud.

The Isacksons are a married couple from Hillsborough, Calif. Bruce Isackson is the president of WP Investments, a real estate development firm in Woodside, Calif. According to WP Investments’ website, Isackson studied at UCLA.

The Isacksons are accused of participating in both the recruitment scheme and cheating scheme. According to court documents, Bruce Isackson worried about what would happen if the scheme got out, saying it would be a “front-page story,” and be an “embarrassment to everyone in the communities.”

Michelle Janavs

Conspiracy to commit mail fraud and honest services mail fraud.

Janavs is a former executive at a large food manufacturer formerly owned by members of her family, according to the criminal indictment.

Elisabeth Kimmel

Conspiracy to commit mail fraud and honest services mail fraud.

Kimmel is the president and general counsel for media company Midwest Television, Inc. based in the San Diego area, according to her LinkedIn page. She is a resident of Las Vegas and La Jolla. She is accused of conspiring to use bribery to gain her daughter admission to Georgetown as a tennis recruit and her son admission to USC as a track recruit.

Marjorie Klapper

Conspiracy to commit mail fraud and honest services mail fraud.

Klapper, of Menlo Park, co-owns a jewelry business. According to the complaint, Klapper asked if her son could take the ACT in Los Angeles after learning about the scheme from another client. She is accused of making a $15,000 purported charitable contribution for her son to participate in the cheating scheme.

Toby MacFarlane

Conspiracy to commit mail fraud and honest services mail fraud.

Toby MacFarlane, of Del Mar, was a senior executive at a title insurance company. He is accused of agreeing to use bribery to gain his daughter admission to USC as a soccer recruit and his son as a basketball recruit.

The complaint outlines how in 2013 Singer allegedly passed along MacFarlane’s daughter’s records to Khosroshahin and Janke, who were USC women’s soccer coaches at the time. They allegedly helped facilitate her admission to the school as a soccer recruit.

After MacFarlane’s daughter was admitted to USC, she continued to get inquiring emails about NCAA eligibility forms she had to complete and notices from her athletics academic counselor asking her to change her Friday classes since she would need to be free for games, according to the complaint.

That email about Friday classes was also sent to the newly appointed head coach of the team, who responded saying MacFarlane’s daughter wasn’t in her list of players, and to contact her “asap.”

According to the complaint, MacFarlane asked Singer for advice about this. Singer allegedly advised him to tell the coaches his daughter had a plantar fasciitis injury and wouldn’t be practicing for a while.

MacFarlane’s daughter graduated in 2018. She never played soccer at USC, according to the complaint.

Steve Lopez: Admissions scandal exposes much that’s wrong with what we teach kids to value (Column) »

William McGlashan

Conspiracy to commit mail fraud and honest services mail fraud.

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William McGlashan in 2017.
(Matt Winkelmeyer / Getty Images)

McGlashan, of Mill Valley, Calif., is a senior executive at global private equity firm TPG Growth. McGlashan also sits on the board of trustees at Marin Academy, a private prep school in San Rafael, according to the Marin Independent Journal.

He is accused of participating in the cheating and college recruitment scheme, and is also accused of conspiring to bribe Heinel, until Tuesday a senior associate athletic director at USC, to ease his son’s admission to the school as a recruited athlete.

Marci Palatella

Conspiracy to commit mail fraud and honest services mail fraud.

Palatella is the founder of liquor distribution company Preservation Distillery. She and her husband, former San Francisco 49ers player Lou Palatella, have been involved in the liquor distribution business for decades.

Palatella is accused of conspiring to bribe USC’s Heinel to designate her son as a football recruit to facilitate his admission to the university.

Peter Jan Sartorio

Conspiracy to commit mail fraud and honest services mail fraud.

Sartorio is a packaged foods entrepreneur based in Menlo Park. According to the San Francisco Business Times, Sartorio co-founded Elena’s Food Specialties Inc., which produces and distributes frozen Mexican food products.

Stephen Semprevivo

Conspiracy to commit mail fraud and honest services mail fraud.

Semprevivo is the chief “strategy and growth officer” at Agoura Hills-based Cydcor, a company that provides outsourced sales services. According to his LinkedIn page, Semprevivo was previously the general manager for Machinima, a video entertainment network.

He is accused of agreeing to bribe Ernst, the Georgetown tennis coach, to facilitate admission for his son — who did not play tennis competitively —to Georgetown.

Devin Sloane

Conspiracy to commit mail fraud and honest services mail fraud.

Sloane is the founder and general manager of the Los Angeles-based water company waterTALENT, which provides staff for water and wastewater treatment facilities, and its parent company aquaTECTURE. According to the company website, he is the former chief executive of a major oil and gas industry equipment supplier and began his career installing sewer mains.

John Wilson

Conspiracy to commit mail fraud and honest services mail fraud.

Wilson, who lives in Lynnfield, Mass., is the founder and CEO of a private equity and real estate development firm, according to the criminal indictment.

Homayoun Zadeh

Conspiracy to commit mail fraud and honest services mail fraud.

Zadeh is a tenured associate professor at USC’s Herman Ostrow School of Dentistry and director of the university’s Advanced Education Program in Periodontology. He received his bachelor’s degree at UCLA before attending USC’s dentistry school.

Robert Zangrillo

Conspiracy to commit mail fraud and honest services mail fraud.

Zangrillo is the lead investor of a controversial Miami development project, the Magic City Innovation District — a plan that would redevelop a historically black, immigrant area of Little Haiti into luxury shops and apartments.


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