Rick Singer, mastermind of the college admissions cheating scheme known as “Varsity Blues” that involved Hollywood stars Felicity Huffman and Lori Loughlin, deserves to spend six years in prison, federal prosecutors said Wednesday night in a sentencing memorandum, far exceeding the six-month sentence the defense sought.
The scandal saw wealthy people, including Huffman and Loughlin, use Singer’s expertise to fraudulently get their children into sought-after colleges.
“Singer was the architect of a massive, decade-long scheme to use fraud and bribery to secure the admission of high school students to elite colleges and universities across the country,” prosecutors wrote, calling his scheme “Staggering in scope” and “breathtaking in its audacity.”
The government acknowledged Singer’s cooperation helped lead to the convictions of more than 50 defendants, including the aforementioned stars. However, they also noted, “His corruption and manipulation of others were practically limitless,” calling him, “far and away the most culpable of the Varsity Blues defendants…and…therefore deserving of the longest sentence…”
Prosecutors said Singer should also pay restitution to the Internal Revenue Service in the amount of $10,668,841 and forfeit more than $3 million in cash and assets worth more than $5 million.
Huffman was ultimately sentenced to 14 days in prison and served 11 after pleading guilty in the scandal. Loughlin and her designer husband, Mossimo Giannulli, pleaded guilty in May of 2020 after paying $500,000 to get their two daughters into the University of Southern California as crew recruits, when neither child participated in the sport.
Loughlin pleaded guilty to one count of conspiracy to commit wire and mail fraud and served two months behind bars. Giannulli was sentenced to five months in prison with an additional two years of supervised release, in addition to a $250,000 fine and community service.
Copyright © 2022, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.