Father sentenced in college admissions scandal, ordered to pay $200,000 — Analysis
Operation Varsity Blues led to the arrest of Operation Varsity Blues parent, who was accused of paying $1.2 Million in bribes to US schools.
On Wednesday, the head of Massachusetts’ private equity company was sentenced to fifteen months federal prison. He is accused in connection with a scandal involving college admissions in America that saw prominent Hollywood stars like Felicity Huffman and Lori Loughlin go behind bars.
John Wilson was charged with using $1.2 million to bribe his three kids’ way into college as Division I athletes, despite the fact that they were not athletes competing at such a high division. Wilson’s arrest was part of Operation Varsity Blues, in which federal authorities investigated and arrested numerous wealthy parents for bribing colleges and falsifying school records.
Prosecutors claim Wilson paid $200,000 for his son to be a recruit in water polo at the University of Southern California, in addition to $1 million in 2018, to send his two daughters to Stanford and Harvard.
Wilson must pay $200,000 in fines, 400 hours community service, and two years of supervised release. This is on top of the 15 month sentence. Wilson was also required to pay $80,000 to IRS for falsely filing tax returns. Wilson was found guilty in October. According to his attorneys, he intends to appeal as he requested a lighter sentence, of six months.
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“Making a donation to improve a qualified applicant’s chances of admission is a well-established process at colleges and universities across the country, and is still in use today,”According to the New York Times, Noel Francisco was a Wilson lawyer.
Gamal Abdelaziz, his co-defendant was also arrested. Both were found guilty. Adbelaziz was sentenced to one year behind bars for falsifying his child’s records to get her into OSC, as well as for paying $300,000.
More than 30 parents have pleaded guilty in the college admissions scandal to date, including ‘Full House’ actress Lori Loughlin, who served two months, and ‘Desperate Housewives’ star Felicity Huffman, who did 14 days in prison.
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