Vancouver businessman David Sidoo sentenced to 3 months in prison in university admissions scandal

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David Sidoo, a Vancouver businessman and philanthropist who pleaded guilty to the American college admissions scandal, was sentenced to three months in jail in a Boston courtroom on Wednesday.Sidoo bowed his head and cried when US district judge Nathaniel Gorton berated him for his actions.

Sidoo told the judge that he was “deeply ashamed”.

“I make no excuses. I broke the law. I pleaded guilty to a crime and now I have to pay for my actions, ”he said.

The former UBC and CFL football player allegedly paid US $ 200,000 for a professional tester to use false credentials to impersonate his two sons to write their SAT.

The same person also went to Vancouver to take a British Columbia high school leaving exam for one of the sons.

According to the prosecution, Sidoo also worked with the mastermind of the scheme, Rick Singer, to concoct a bogus story for one of his son’s college admission tests on the teenager detained under threat of gun by a Los Angeles gang before being rescued by a rival gang member named “Nugget.” “

William ‘Rick’ Singer leaves the Boston court on March 12, 2019, after facing charges as part of the admission program to American universities. (Brian Snyder / Reuters)

In March, Sidoo pleaded guilty in federal court to a charge of conspiracy to postal fraud. The plea agreement called on Sidoo to serve 90 days in prison and pay a fine of $ 250,000.

He initially pleaded not guilty to several counts.

Sidoo was not available to comment, but a statement released by his lawyers said that he has devoted his adult life to making positive contributions.

“His life should not be defined by his worst moments, and he is determined for a more productive future,” he says.

A defense communication dated July 10 contains a list of Sidoo’s charities and a description of how he was affected by his discovery.

“Mr. Sidoo is a 61-year-old man who made a huge mistake, out of misplaced love for his sons, which is incompatible with the whole story of his personal life,” reads the document. “In addition, Mr. Sidoo suffered physically and mentally. “

In March, Sidoo’s name was removed from the grounds of Thunderbird Stadium on the UBC campus. (Ben Nelms / CBC)

The submission also includes letters of support from more than a dozen people, including Canadian Football Hall of Fame quarterback and professional Warren Moon, former British Columbia attorney general Wally Oppal, the personality from TSN Farhan Lalji and former MP and Cabinet Minister Herb Dhaliwal.

Last month, the Order of British Columbia in Sidoo was revoked. In March, his name was removed from the field at Thunderbird Stadium on the University of British Columbia campus.

Sidoo is the second parent in British Columbia to be convicted of the scandal.

Surrey resident Xiaoning Sui fined $ 250,000 after admitting to paying $ 400,000 to secure her son’s admission to the University of California at Los Angeles by bribery as alleged soccer rookie.

Her plea agreement saved her from further prison terms. Sui spent five months in prison in Spain, where she was arrested in September 2019.

Surrey, British Columbia, Resident Xiaoning Sui Leaves Boston Federal Court In February After Pleading Guilty For Paying $ 400,000 To Bring Her Son To The University Of California, Los Angeles, As A False Recruit of soccer. (Associated Press / Elise Amendola)

More than 50 people have been charged in an academic cheating scheme involving wealthy parents and sports coaches at elite universities in the United States.

Authorities say the parents have worked with Singer to ask someone to cheat on their children’s exams or have them admitted to selective schools with false sports credentials.

Sidoo was CEO of the mining company Advantage Lithium Corp. when he was arrested last year.

He was also a founding shareholder of an oil and gas company that was sold in 2010 for more than $ 600 million.

He appeared in court via video link due to the coronavirus pandemic.

Among those who pleaded guilty to the scandal are Full house Actress Lori Loughlin and her fashion designer husband Mossimo Giannulli, who admitted they paid half a million dollars to bring their two daughters into the University of Southern California using fake recruits.

They should be sentenced next month. If the judge accepts their plea agreement, Loughlin will be sentenced to two months in prison and Giannulli will be sentenced to five months.

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