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Press Release

California Entrepreneur Sentenced in College Admissions Case

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, District of Massachusetts

BOSTON –  A California man became the eighth parent to be sentenced today in connection with the college admissions case.

Peter Jan Sartorio, 53, of Menlo Park, Calif., was sentenced by U.S. District Court Judge Indira Talwani to one year of probation, ordered to complete 250 hours of community service and to pay a fine of $9,500. In May 2019, Sartorio pleaded guilty to one count of conspiracy to commit mail fraud and honest services mail fraud.

The government recommended a sentence of one month in prison, one year of supervised release and a fine of $9,500.

Beginning in the spring of 2017, Sartorio conspired with William “Rick” Singer and others to have his daughter’s ACT exam corrected, thereby fraudulently inflating the score. As part of the scheme, Sartorio took steps to secure extended time for his daughter to take the ACT, which allowed her to take the exam at a test center in West Hollywood that Singer “controlled” through the center’s corrupt administrator, Igor Dvorskiy. After Sartorio’s daughter completed the exam on June 10, 2017, without using the extra time she had been allotted, co-conspirator Mark Riddell corrected her answers. As a result of the cheating scheme, Sartorio’s daughter received a score of 27 out of 36 on the exam, which placed her in the 86th percentile. Sartorio paid Singer $15,000 in cash, structuring the cash withdrawals in three smaller increments over several days to avoid bank reporting requirements.

Case information, including the status of each defendant, charging documents and plea agreements are available here:          

United States Attorney Andrew E. Lelling; Joseph R. Bonavolonta, Special Agent in Charge of the Federal Bureau of Investigation, Boston Field Division; and Kristina O’Connell, Special Agent in Charge of the Internal Revenue Service’s Criminal Investigations in Boston made the announcement today. Assistant U.S. Attorneys Eric S. Rosen, Justin D. O’Connell, Leslie A. Wright and Kristen A. Kearney of Lelling’s Securities and Financial Fraud Unit are prosecuting the case.


Updated October 11, 2019