American universities were rocked this year by the “Varsity Blues” scandal, a wide-ranging college admissions bribery scheme uncovered by the DOJ that involved Hollywood celebrities and Silicon Valley executives.
The Varsity Blues college admissions scandal caught national headlines. Wealthy elites were accused of paying substantial bribes to have their children admitted to top universities around the country.
Here are five of Breitbart News’ favorite Varsity Blues scandal stories:
California winemaker sent to jail for having SAT test doctored, daughter added to USC water polo team
California winemaker Agustin Francisco Huneeus was sentenced to five months in prison after he pled guilty to paying a $300,000 bribe to have his daughter admitted to the University of Southern California.
Huneeus used a portion of the funds to bribe a SAT exam proctor to adjust his daughter’s answers prior to submitting the exam. The winemaker used the rest of the funds to bribe representatives at the University of Southern California to admit his daughter as a recruit on the water polo team.
Huneeus has received the longest sentence of any of the parents charged in the bribery scandal so far.
Actress Felicity Huffman sentenced to 14 days in prison for her role in scheme
Actress Felicity Huffman was sentenced to 14 days in prison after paying $15,000 to have her daughter’s SAT exam answers modified by a proctor prior to submission.
“I am deeply sorry to the students, parents, colleges, and universities who have been impacted by my actions,” Huffman said prior to her sentencing. ”I am sorry to my daughter, Sophia, my daughter, Georgia, and my husband, Bill. I have betrayed them all.”
Huffman was released from prison after 11-days of her 14-day-sentence as a reward for good behavior.
Father buys Harvard coach’s Home for doouble its market value in suspected admissions bribe
Maryland businessman Jie Zhao purchased the home of Harvard fencing coach Peter Brand for twice its market value as part of a suspected bribe to have his son admitted to the university as a fencing recruit.
Zhao claimed that he purchased the home so that Brand could relocate closer to Harvard’s practice facilities. “I want to help Peter Brand because I feel so sorry he has to travel so much to go to fencing practice,” Zhao said at the time. However, the distance between Brand’s former home and the fencing practice was a mere 12 miles.
Daughter of real estate tycoon featured on UCLA championship soccer team — but never played the sport before
UCLA student Lauren Isackson was included on the roster of the 2017 UCLA women’s soccer team that was the runner-up to the eventual national champions. The problem? Isackson never played soccer prior to college.
“I know it has been a rough ride,” Isackson’s mother wrote in an email to scam mastermind Rick Singer, “but I thank you from the bottom of my heart and soul for your persistence, creativity and commitment towards helping [our daughter].”
Isackson, daughter of Bruce Isackson, the owner of a real estate investment firm in California, was ultimately removed from the UCLA women’s soccer team.
Lori Loughlin’s daughter partied on yacht of USC Chairman as scandal broke
Former Full House actress Lori Loughlin was accused by the Department of Justice of paying a $500,000 bribe to have her two daughters admitted to USC. Loughlin even went as far as having her daughters pose on rowing equipment so that they could be admitted to the university as crew recruits. Like Isackson, neither of Loughlin’s daughters had rowing experience.
Loughlin’s daughter, Olivia Jade, was reportedly partying on a yacht owned by Rick Caruso, the Chairman of the Board of the University of Southern California, when news broke that her parents had bribed officials at the university in exchange for her admission.