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Press Release

Former Accountant for College Admissions Scheme Sentenced

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

BOSTON – A former accountant for the Edge College & Career Network (also known as The Key) and the Key Worldwide Foundation was sentenced today in federal court in Boston for his role in the college admissions case.

Steven Masera, 72, of Folsom, Calif., was sentenced by U.S. District Court Judge Indira Talwani to time served, three years of supervised release and was ordered to pay a $20,000 fine. In June 2019, Masera pleaded guilty to conspiracy to commit racketeering.

Beginning in or about 2008, Masera began working as an accountant for William “Rick” Singer. From that time until his resignation in or about December 2017, Masera was responsible for managing payments to and from Singer’s for-profit college counseling business, The Key, and sham charitable foundation, The Key Worldwide Foundation (KWF). This included parent payments made in connection with both the athletic recruitment “side-door” and test-cheating aspects of Singer’s scheme, as well as the associated back-end payments to university insiders and other facilitators. At Singer’s direction, Masera invoiced parents for Singer’s illegitimate services, made bribe payments to university coaches and athletic department administrators (and university athletic funds under their control) and to SAT/ACT administrators and proctors, and created fraudulent donation receipt letters and fake invoices to allow parents to write their payments off as purported donations or business expenses.

Case information, including the status of each defendant, is available here:

United States Attorney Rachael S. Rollins; Joseph R. Bonavolonta, Special Agent in Charge of the Federal Bureau of Investigation, Boston Division; Joleen D. Simpson, Special Agent in Charge of the Internal Revenue Service’s Criminal Investigations in Boston; and Terry Harris, Special Agent in Charge of the U.S. Department of Education Office of Inspector General Eastern Regional Office, made the announcement today. Assistant U.S. Attorneys Stephen E. Frank, Kristen A. Kearney, Ian J. Stearns and Leslie Wright of Rollins’ Securities, Financial & Cyber Fraud Unit prosecuted the case.

Updated May 13, 2022