Wealthy Parents Implicated in College Admission Bribery Scandal Face Judge

Greg and Marcia Abbott wore dark knit caps to disguise themselves to and from federal court.

Entrance to the USC admissions center, which is at the center of a federal investigation into widespread bribery to admit children of the rich and powerful into elite universities. (Photo by Allen J. Schaben / Los Angeles Times via Getty Images)
Entrance to the USC admissions center, which is at the center of a federal investigation into widespread bribery to admit children of the rich and powerful into elite universities. (Photo by Allen J. Schaben / Los Angeles Times via Getty Images)
By Reed Richardson / March 31, 2019 11:35 am

Wealthy, East Coast parents accused of bribing college officials and paying to rig standardized tests to get their children into elite colleges faced a federal judge this week. They joined numerous co-defendants from the West Coast—among them, Hollywood actresses Felicity Huffman and Lori Loughlin—who had already spent a day in court earlier this month.

Greg and Marcia Abbott, who stand accused of paying $125,000 to have a Harvard graduate correct their daughter’s SAT and ACT scores before submission, stood before a judge on Friday in Boston where they were allowed to remain free on bond. The Abbotts have been implicated along with dozens of other parents in a widespread college admissions scandal involving “consultant” Rick Singer, who allegedly paid off admissions officials, college coaches, and corrupt test proctors to place the sons and daughters of wealthy families at elite schools like Stanford, USC, and Duke. Greg Abbott is the founder of the International Dispensing Corporation and was the company’s CEO up until three weeks ago when the charges against him and his wife were made public.

At the most recent hearing, the judge reminded the Abbotts that, even though marijuana use is legal in Massachusetts, indulging in it was still a federal crime and would violate the terms of their bail. Notably, the Abbott’s middle child, Malcolm, a wannabe rapper who goes by the name “Billa,” had defended them in an in-person interview with the press just two weeks ago, all while visibly smoking a joint.

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