September 16, 2021, 17:04

    Tennis coach agrees to plead guilty in Varsity Blues college admissions scheme

    Tennis coach agrees to plead guilty in Varsity Blues college admissions scheme

    Rhode Island tennis legend Gordon Ernst, who formerly coached at Georgetown, has agreed to plead guilty in connection with his role in the college admissions cheating scheme that embroiled actress Lori Loughlin and other high-profile people, according to a court document filed Wednesday.

    Ernst has been charged with allegedly taking nearly $3 million in bribes to pass off certain high school students as Georgetown tennis recruits.

    He has agreed to plead guilty to five separate counts, including conspiracy, federal programs bribery and filing false tax returns, according to the documents.

    PHOTO: Gordon Ernst, former Georgetown tennis coach, departs federal court in Boston after facing charges in a nationwide college admissions bribery scandal, March 25, 2019.Steven Senne/AP, FILEGordon Ernst, former Georgetown tennis coach, departs federal court in Boston after facing charges in a nationwide college admissions bribery scandal, March 25, 2019.

    “Defendant expressly and unequivocally admits that he committed the crimes charged in Counts Four through Seven and Twenty-One of the Second Superseding Indictment, did so knowingly, intentionally and willfully, and is in fact guilty of those offenses,” the document said.

    In exchange for Ernst’s plea federal prosecutors in Boston have agreed to recommend a sentencing of no more than four years in prison followed by two years of supervised release. He would also have to forfeit more than $3 million.

    Ernst coached at Georgetown for 12 years. In that time prosecutors have alleged he accepted bribes to get at least a dozen applicants into Georgetown as tennis recruits even though some of them did not play competitive tennis.

    Lori Loughlin and her husband, Mossimo Giannulli had paid $500,000 to scheme mastermind Rick Singer to get their two daughters into the University of Southern California as rowing team recruits, even though their daughers weren’t competitive athletes.

    The parents were among 50 suspects charged in the investigation dubbed Varsity Blues, which found wealthy parents who cheated college applications and entrance exams to get their children into elite schools. In some cases, parents bribed coaches who falsified students’ athletics histories, including an instance where a real athlete’s photo was manipulated to look like one of the students, prosecutors said.

    The “Full House” actress was sentenced to serve two months in prison, pay a $150,000 fine and two years of supervised release with 100 hours of community service, while her husband, a fashion designer, was sentenced to serve five months in prison, a $250,000 fine and two years of supervised release with 250 hours of community service, according to the U.S. Attorney’s Office in the District of Massachusetts.

    Loughlin was released from prison in December 2020. Giannulli was released in April.

    Sourse: abcnews.go.com

    Related posts

    Leave a Reply

    Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

    We use cookies in order to give you the best possible experience on our website. By continuing to use this site, you agree to our use of cookies. You can find a detailed description in our Privacy Policy.
    Accept
    Reject
    Privacy Policy