Vancouver businessman David Sidoo charged in U.S. college entrance scandal   Times Colonist

Vancouver businessman David Sidoo charged in U.S. college entrance scandal Times Colonist

August 13, 2019 1 By Stanley Isaacs


Vancouver businessman David Sidoo charged in U.S. college entrance scandal Times Colonist March 12, 2019 02:07 PM Vancouver businessman and former CFL player David Sidoo has been charged with conspiracy to commit mail and wire fraud in connection with a far reaching FBI investigation into a criminal conspiracy that sought to help privileged kids with middling grades gain admission to elite U.S. universities. In what is being called the biggest college admissions scam ever prosecuted by the U.S. Justice Department, Sidoo, an investment banker and CEO of Advantage Lithium, has been charged with nearly 50 other people, including Hollywood actresses Felicity Huffman and Lori Loughlin. In a 12 page indictment filed March 5 in the U.S. District Court of Massachusetts, Sidoo is accused of making two separate dollar 100,000 US payments to have an accomplice, whose name was redacted in the court file, complete SAT entrance exams for Sidoos two sons. Sidoo, who was awarded the Order of B.C. in 2016 for his philanthropic efforts, is also accused of providing documents for the purpose of creating falsified identification cards. According to the indictment, Sidoos older son scored a total of 1,670 out of a possible 2,400 on the SAT, while his younger son, who was accepted into the University of California Berkeley, scored a total of 2,280 on the exam. According to the court file, the accomplice was directed not to obtain too high a score for the older son, who had previously taken the test himself and obtained a score of 1,460. The alleged incidents involving Sidoos sons occurred in 2011 and 2012. Sidoos lawyer, Richard A. Schonfeld, issued a statement Tuesday saying his client has been repeatedly recognized for his philanthropic endeavours, which is a true testament to his character. The charge that has been lodged against David is an allegation that carries with it the presumption that he is innocent. We look forward to presenting our case in court, and ask that people dont rush to judgment in the meantime, Schonfeld said. None of the allegations have been proven in court. Sidoo is a prominent donor to the University of B.C., his alma mater, and is credited with spearheading an alumni fundraising campaign that resuscitated the schools once struggling football team. Sidoo Field at UBCs Thunderbird Stadium is named in his honour. Ive built my reputation on integrity, Sidoo told Postmedia News sports columnist Ed Willes in 2016. I would never break a rule. But youve got to keep pushing. The 59 year old owns a residence along West Point Greys Belmont Avenue, which is noted for being B.C.s wealthiest neighbourhood. Sidoos home was recently assessed at dollar 35.88 million. His neighbours include billionaires Chip Wilson and Joe Segal. Find out whats happening in your community. Get the days top Times Colonist headlines emailed to you every morning The Times Colonist is looking for people to deliver flyers every Thursday …