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Ex-Stanford coach avoids prison in college admissions scandal

Stanford University sailing coach John Vandemoer at the Boston federal courthouse in March. Photo: Scott Eisen/Getty Images
Stanford University sailing coach John Vandemoer at the Boston federal courthouse. Photo: Scott Eisen/Getty Images

The former Stanford University head sailing coach avoided prison time at his sentencing on Wednesday after he admitted to helping secure spots for students at the school in exchange for $610,000 in bribes, AP reports.

Why it matters: Ex-coach John Vandemoer is the first to be sentenced of the 50 people connected to the college admission scandal, an underground web of wealthy parents who used money to guarantee their children's acceptance into several universities. Judge Rya Zobel's decision sets the tone for the fates of coaches, parents and other co-conspirators involved.

Details: Prosecutors had asked Vandemoer to be sentenced to 13 months in prison. The judge sentenced him to one day behind bars, which was already considered completed, as well as a $10,000 fine and 2 years of supervised release with 6 months of home confinement.

  • Vandemoer pleaded guilty to federal racketeering charges in March.
  • His attorney said the money he accepted went to the sailing team, rather than his own pocket.
  • "This was the biggest mistake of my life,” Vandemoer told the Wall Street Journal on Tuesday.

The backdrop: Those prosecuted were accused of paying California college admissions consultant William “Rick” Singer to orchestrate their children's acceptance into athletic programs or using forged college-entrance exams.

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