William “Rick” Singer lured clients with promises to open “side door” into elite schools. They could pose as recruited athletes and obtain fake SAT and ACT scores, he said. Singer showed little emotion as he read a statement of apology to affected families in court. “Fraud on an industrial scale,” the government called it. Two parents who pleaded guilty were actresses Felicity Huffman and Lori Loughlin.
Gordon Ernst, a former tennis coach at Georgetown, was sentenced in July to two and a half years. Singer started cooperating with federal investigators in September 2018 after they confronted him.