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Former CEO to serve home confinement in U.S. college admissions scandal

Nate Raymond
·2 mins read

By Nate Raymond

BOSTON, Oct 5 (Reuters) - The former chief executive of a staffing and information technology services provider was sentenced on Monday to a year of home confinement after admitting he participated in a vast U.S. college admissions and fraud scheme.

Federal prosecutors in Boston say that former ASGN Inc CEO Peter Dameris paid $300,000 to bribe a Georgetown University coach to falsely designate his older son as a tennis recruit to secure his admission to the school.

He pleaded guilty in June to conspiracy to commit mail fraud and honest services mail fraud. Prosecutors, rather than seeking prison, agreed to seek only 21 months of home confinement, citing health issues involving his children.

U.S. District Judge Richard Stearns cited those issues in imposing the shorter term. Dameris' younger son has been treated for leukemia and his oldest child, the one who attended Georgetown, had brain surgery in high school to treat a tumor.

Stearns also ordered Dameris, 60, to pay a $95,000 fine. During a virtual hearing, Dameris, of Pacific Palisades, California, said he was pained that "my actions may have caused anyone to have further distrust of the admissions process."

Dameris is among 58 people who have been charged in the scandal, in which prosecutors said parents conspired with California college admissions consultant William "Rick" Singer to secure their children's college admissions.

The parents include "Desperate Housewives" star Felicity Huffman, who received a 14-day prison sentence, and "Full House" star Lori Loughlin, who was sentenced to two months in prison.

Several college sports coaches have also faced charges, including former Georgetown tennis coach Gordon Ernst, who prosecutors said accepted bribes from Singer to facilitate the admission of students as purported tennis recruits.

Prosecutors said Dameris agreed from 2015 to 2016 to pay Singer $300,000 to bribe Ernst to designate his older son as a recruit. (Reporting by Nate Raymond in Boston; Editing by Peter Cooney)