A Rough Week for Parents in Admissions Scandal

Except for Felicity Huffman, it was a bad week for the parents.

October 28, 2019
 
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Federal prison

Felicity Huffman was released from federal prison Friday, two days before her 14-day sentence was due to expire. The two days off were consistent with rules for federal prisons, where people who are scheduled for a release on Sunday are in fact let out on Friday.

Huffman, the actress, was one of the parents who admitted guilt in the admissions scandal. But aside from her case, the news for parents and others involved in the scandal last week was not good.

Last week saw more guilty pleas and a new round of indictments in the scandal.

On Monday, three more sets of parents pleaded guilty to their parts in the scandal.

Douglas Hodge, the former CEO of Pimco, pleaded guilty to an indictment charging him with one count of conspiracy to commit mail and wire fraud and honest services mail and wire fraud and one count of conspiracy to commit money laundering. He paid $525,000 to have his son and daughter admitted to the University of Southern California. He worked with Rick Singer, who orchestrated the scandal, to have his daughter pretend to be a soccer player and his son a football player.

Michelle Janavs pleaded guilty to paying $300,000 to Singer, one count of conspiracy to commit mail and wire fraud and honest services mail and wire fraud and one count of conspiracy to commit money laundering. In addition to having her daughter pretend to be an athlete, Janavs paid for her ACT scores to be corrected.

And Manuel Henriquez, the founder of Hercules Capital, and his wife, Elizabeth Henriquez, pleaded guilty today to an indictment charging one count of conspiracy to commit mail and wire fraud and honest services mail and wire fraud and one count of conspiracy to commit money laundering. They paid to have their daughters' SAT scores corrected, and for one of their daughters to pose as an athlete to be admitted to Georgetown University.

The guilty pleas were accompanied by reports that there were about to be new charges in the case. And the next day after the guilty pleas, there were.

New federal indictments were handed down Tuesday against 11 parents in the college admissions scandal. The parents have previous faced lower charges. They were charged with allegedly "conspir[ing] to commit federal program bribery by bribing employees of the University of Southern California (USC) to facilitate their children’s admission. In exchange for the bribes, employees of the university allegedly designated the defendants’ children as athletic recruits -- with little or no regard for their athletic abilities -- or as members of other favored admissions categories."

One parent -- John Wilson -- was also charged with two counts of federal program bribery "in connection with his efforts to use bribes to secure his children’s admission to Harvard University and Stanford University."

New charges were also brought against coaches in the scandal. Seven coaches were charged with conspiring to commit mail and wire fraud and honest services mail and wire fraud. Six of them were also charged with substantive wire and honest services wire fraud.

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