In a set of explosive allegations laid out in federal court in Boston, a slew of actors and chief executives have been indicted in a nationwide college admissions cheating scam, according to ABC.
The indictees, including actors Felicity Huffman and Lori Loughlin, allegedly paid bribes of up to $6 million to secure admission to their children into elite colleges, including Stanford, the University of Southern California, Yale, and Georgetown.
In the operation, federal agents secretly recorded Huffman, an Emmy-award winning actor best known for her role on Desperate Housewives, as she spoke on the phone with a cooperating witness. For Loughlin, best known for her role as Aunt Becky on the sitcom Full House, agents obtained emails from her that allegedly show her involvement in the scam.
A total of 50 people, including parents and coaches, are embroiled in what’s being called the largest-ever admissions bribery case.
“Beginning in or about 2011, and continuing through the present, the defendants—principally individuals whose high-school age children were applying to college—conspired with others to use bribery and other forms of fraud to facilitate their children’s admission to colleges and universities in the District of Massachusetts and elsewhere, including Yale University, Stanford University, the University of Texas, the University of Southern California, and the University of Southern California-Los Angeles,” the indictment said.
Most of the students who benefited from the alleged bribes were not aware of the circumstances of their acceptances, according to ABC.
While Huffman paid $15,000 as a “purported charitable contribution…to participate in the college entrance exam cheating scheme on behalf of her eldest daughter,” the charging documents read, Loughlin “agreed to pay bribes totaling $500,000.” In return, Loughlin’s two daughters were accepted to USC as “recruits to the USC crew team—despite the fact that they did not participate in crew.”
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