Longest prison sentence in college admissions scandal handed down
Former real estate executive Toby MacFarlane was sentenced to six months in prison Wednesday for his role in the college admissions scandal — the longest prison term for any of the defendants so far.
MacFarlane must also pay a $150,000 fine and perform 200 hours of community service, according to the US Attorney’s Office of Massachusetts. Prosecutors had recommended 15 months in prison, one year of supervised release and a fine of $95,000.
MacFarlane, 56, a former executive at a California title insurance company, previously pleaded guilty to one count of conspiracy to commit mail fraud and honest services mail fraud.
Prosecutors say he gave William “Rick” Singer $450,000 to get his son and daughter admitted into the University of Southern California as star athletes, when neither of them was.
MacFarlane’s daughter had never played soccer when she submitted her application to USC in 2013 with an essay that said in part: “My parents have a hard time attending my soccer matches because our opponent’s parents are always making rude remarks about that number 8 player who plays without a care for her body or anyone else’s on the field. It is true that I can be a bit intense out there on the field.”
She was able to graduate from the school before anyone knew of her involvement with Singer, the mastermind behind the national college admissions scandal.
MacFarlane’s son was accepted as a basketball recruit in 2017. His application listed his height at 6 feet, 1 inch, when he was 5 feet, 5 inches tall, and said that he played on the varsity team from 2014 to 2016, even though he only played his senior year.
Several parents have been sentenced over the scandal, including actress Felicity Huffman. She was was released after serving 11 days of a two-week sentence for her role in the scandal. Sentences had previously ranged from probation to 5 months in prison.
CNN’s Brian Vitagliano and Darran Simon contributed to this report.