Jorge Salcedo, the former UCLA soccer coach charged with endorsing the fraudulent admission of two students for $200,000 in bribes, will plead guilty to conspiring to commit racketeering, according to a plea agreement unsealed Tuesday.
In his plea agreement, which Salcedo signed Sunday, prosecutors from the U.S. attorney’s office in Boston said they would recommend a sentence at the low end of a guideline range that calls for 24 to 30 months in federal prison. Salcedo agreed to forfeit $200,000, the sum he pocketed from two families whose children were admitted to UCLA as phony soccer players, prosecutors have alleged.
In 2016, Salcedo helped William “Rick” Singer, the Newport Beach consultant at the center of the admissions scandal, ensure that the daughter of a wealthy Bay Area couple was admitted to UCLA, forwarding the girl’s fabricated soccer credentials to his colleagues on the women’s soccer team, according to a series of indictments handed up by grand juries in Boston last year.
The couple, Bruce and Davina Isackson, paid Singer $250,000 for the deal, $100,000 of which went to Salcedo, the indictments charged. The Isacksons have pleaded guilty to fraud, money laundering and tax charges and are cooperating with the government.
In 2018, Salcedo ensured the son of another of Singer’s clients — Xiaoning Sui, a Chinese national living in British Columbia — was admitted to UCLA as a recruit for the men’s soccer team, the indictments charged. Sui’s son was approved for admission and awarded a 25% athletic scholarship, despite the fact the boy did not play soccer. Sui has pleaded guilty to conspiring to commit fraud and international money laundering.
Salcedo, a graduate of UCLA who led the men’s soccer program for 15 seasons, resigned in March 2019, one week after he was charged with conspiring to commit racketeering. He was subsequently charged with conspiring to commit fraud and bribery, although prosecutors agreed in his plea deal to dismiss those counts.
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