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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
District of Massachusetts

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Thursday, December 9, 2021

Parent Sentenced in College Admissions Case

Former media company CEO paid $525,000 to facilitate her children’s admission to two universities using admissions slots reserved for recruited athletes

BOSTON – The former chief executive of a California-based media company was sentenced today in connection with her involvement in the college admissions case.

Elisabeth Kimmel, 56, of Las Vegas, Nev., was sentenced by U.S. District Court Judge Nathaniel M. Gorton to six weeks in prison, two years of supervised release with the first year spent in home confinement, 500 hours of community service and a fine of $250,000. On Aug. 16, 2021, Kimmel pleaded guilty to one count of conspiracy to commit mail and wire fraud.

Kimmel agreed with William “Rick” Singer and others to pay $275,000 to facilitate her daughter’s admission to Georgetown University by having Georgetown tennis coach Gordon Ernst allocate a tennis admission slot to her daughter, even though she was not a competitive tennis player and was not actually being recruited to play on the Georgetown tennis team. Kimmel further agreed with Singer and others to pay $250,000 to facilitate her son’s admission to the University of Southern California as a pole vault recruit, even though he was not a pole vaulter.

Kimmel is the 29th parent to be sentenced in the case. Singer and Ernst previously pleaded guilty and are pending sentencing.

Case information, including the status of each defendant, are available here: https://www.justice.gov/usao-ma/investigations-college-admissions-and-testing-bribery-scheme.

Acting United States Attorney Nathaniel R. Mendell; 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 Mark Deckett, Resident Agent in Charge of the Department of Education, Office of Inspector General made the announcement today. Assistant U.S. Attorneys Leslie A. Wright, Kristen A. Kearney, Ian J. Stearns, and Stephen E. Frank of Mendell’s Securities, Financial and Cyber Fraud Unit prosecuted the case.

The remaining defendants are presumed innocent until proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt in a court of law.

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Updated December 9, 2021