Watch CBS News

College Scandal: Who Is William Singer?

BOSTON (CBSLA) — William "Rick" Singer is the man who the Justice Department calls the mastermind of the nationwide college admissions scandal.

The FBI on Tuesday spelled out how Singer designed the scam and collected tens of millions of dollars from it.

College Prep Chief William "Rick" Singer Charged In College Admissions Fraud Scheme
BOSTON, MA - MARCH 12: William "Rick" Singer leaves Boston Federal Court after being charged with racketeering conspiracy, money laundering conspiracy, conspiracy to defraud the United States, and obstruction of justice on March 12, 2019 in Boston, Massachusetts. Singer is among several charged in alleged college admissions scam. (Photo by Scott Eisen/Getty Images)

From a house in Orange County and a college prep company registered in California, Singer allegedly took payments to get students in colleges across the country.

Singer pleaded guilty in federal court in Boston Tuesday to running a nationwide college admissions bribery scheme.

Singer lived in a house in Newport Beach and ran The Key Foundation, whose mission according to its website "is to provide guidance, encouragement, and opportunity to disadvantaged students around the world."

But according to the indictment, it was the rich and famous who had the advantage.

"Wealthy parents paid Singer about $25 million in total to guarantee their children's admission to elite schools," said Andrew E. Lelling, US Attorney, District of Massachusetts.

Many allegedly made contributions to Singer's nonprofit called The Key Worldwide Foundation in return for getting their kids into schools.

Tax records show Key Worldwide took in almost $4 million in 2016.

View CBS News In
CBS News App Open
Chrome Safari Continue
Be the first to know
Get browser notifications for breaking news, live events, and exclusive reporting.