BOSTON, Mass. – A year after dozens of prominent parents and athletic coaches at top universities were arrested in a college admissions cheating scheme, some are heading to prison while others are gearing up to fight the charges at trial in Boston. More than 50 people have been charged in the case, which has put a spotlight on the cut-throat admissions process and the lengths some wealthy parents will go to get their kids into the nation's most prestigious schools.
Here's a look at where the case stands:
Eight parents are scheduled to go on trial in October. They include “Full House” star Lori Loughlin and her fashion designer husband, Mossimo Giannulli, who are accused of paying $500,000 to get their daughters into the University of Southern California as fake crew recruits. The famous couple says they are innocent and their payments were legitimate donations. Another seven parents will go on trial in January.
Four coaches are still fighting the allegations. Among them are longtime tennis coach Gordon Ernst, who’s accused of getting $2.7 million in bribes to designate at least 12 applicants as recruits to Georgetown. USC's former senior associate athletic director, Donna Heinel, and water polo coach, Jovan Vavic, are also challenging allegations against them.
Twenty one parents have admitted to paying bribes to have someone cheat on their children's entrance exams or pretend their kids were star athletes for sports they didn't play. They include “Desperate Housewives" actress Felicity Huffman, who paid $15,000 to have a proctor correct her daughter's SAT exam answers. Huffman served a two-week prison sentence in October.
Five coaches have pleaded guilty. Among them is former Yale women's soccer coach Rudy Meredith, who helped investigators unravel the wider bribery scheme by leading them to the admitted mastermind, admissions consultant Rick Singer. Singer has pleaded guilty to racketeering conspiracy and several other charges and has not yet been sentenced.