Janss Steps at UCLA. (Wikimedia Commons)

Surrey mom allegedly paid $400,000 for son’s UCLA admission in U.S. college bribery scandal

Xiaoning Sui, 48, was arrested in Spain on Monday night

A Surrey mother has been charged in connection to the U.S. college bribery scandal, marking the second parent from B.C. to be accused of paying money to a university or college in exchange for their child’s admission.

Xiaoning Sui, 48, was arrested in Spain on Monday night, according to the U.S. attorney in Massachusetts.

She is charged with one count of conspiracy to commit mail fraud and honest services mail fraud. Sui is currently detained in Spain, and authorities will be seeking her extradition to Boston to face the charge.

According to court documents unsealed in Boston Monday, Sui allegedly paid $400,000 to William “Rock” Singer in 2018, in order to have her son admitted to UCLA as a soccer recruit. Evidence includes phone calls beginning in August 2018 where Singer, a Newport Beach college consultant, allegedly told Sui she would be “guaranteed” admission into the university in exchange for the large sum of money.

Co-conspirator Laura Janke, who already pleaded guilty to her role in the scam, then fabricated a soccer profile for Sui’s son, which described him as a top player for two private soccer clubs in Canada.

Sui wired $100,000 to a Massachusetts bank account in the name of Singer’s sham charitable organization in October 2018, the court documents allege. Shortly after, Su’s son was admitted to the university as a soccer player on a 25 per cent scholarship.

ALSO READ:Accused test-taker pleads guilty in college bribery scandal involving B.C. businessman

Sui allegedly wired another $300,000 to the same account in January 2019. If convicted, conspiracy to commit mail fraud and honest services mail fraud carries a maximum sentence of 20 years in prison, and a fine of $250,000.

Sui is the 52nd person to be indicted for allegedly using bribery or other forms of fraud, including celebrities like Lori Laughlin, who pleaded not guilty and is awaiting trial, as well as Felicity Huffman who was sentenced last week to 14 days behind bars and a $30,000 fine.

Meanwhile, Singer pleaded guilty in March to helping bribe university sports coaches to present clients’ children as fake athletic recruits. His sentencing is set for later this month.

Jorge Salcedo, the UCLA men’s soccer coach, who has also been charged with racketeering conspiracy in connection to the scheme, pleaded not guilty.

The only other B.C. defendant in the case so far, former CFL player David Sidoo, pleaded not guilty after being charged in March with conspiracy to commit mail and wire fraud. It’s alleged he paid $200,000 in total for someone to take an entrance exam on behalf of both his sons, and that he also paid an undisclosed amount for someone to fly to Vancouver and take a high school test.

READ MORE: B.C. businessman David Sidoo pleads not guilty in U.S. college bribery case


@ashwadhwani
ashley.wadhwani@bpdigital.ca

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

As thrift store aims to reopen, Surrey Hospice Society struggles to raise funds

‘Right now I think people are suffering grief more than they ever have’

Surrey School District forecasts up to 30 per cent of students will return to class this week

Education Minister Rob Fleming said on June 1, about 60,000 B.C. children returned to school

Surrey police look for suspect who took off court-ordered electronic monitoring

Arrest warrant issued for Dyllan Petrin, 19, charged in relation to kidnapping and assault

South Surrey seniors home ends outdoor class after complaints from neighbour

‘Everybody has a right, and they don’t have a right to infringe on us,’ a neighbour said

Video tribute to KPU’s spring grad class also honours Andrew Petter, Bill Wright

‘We still want to celebrate our graduates, their achievements, and their resilience’

B.C. records four new COVID-19 cases, Abbotsford hospital outbreak cleared

Four senior home outbreaks also declared over, eight still active

Young killer whale untangles itself from trap line off Nanaimo shore

DFO marine mammal rescue unit was en route as whale broke free from prawn trap line

Racist incident shocks Vancouver Island First Nation

Port Alberni RCMP investigating after video shows truck wheeling through Tseshaht territory

Vancouver Island school principal mourns brother, cousin killed during U.S. protests

Jelks says he’s grateful for the outpouring of support from the community in the wake of this tragedy

Facing changes together: Your community, your journalists

Importance of accurate, ethical reporting more critical than ever

Bank of Canada keeps key interest rate target on hold at 0.25%

Central bank now expects GDP to decline between 10 and 20 per cent compared with the fourth quarter of 2019

RCMP, coroner investigate murder-suicide on Salt Spring Island

Two dead, police say there is no risk to the public

B.C. schools see 30% of expected enrolment in schools as in-class teaching restarts amid pandemic

Education minister noted that in-class instruction remains optional

Trudeau avoids questions about anti-racism protesters dispersed for Trump photo-op

Prime minister says racism is an issue Canadians must tackle at home, too

Most Read