Prosecutors unveil new charges against Northwestern parents accused of participating in college admissions scheme


Via Mercury News Youtube

Manuel and Elizabeth Henriquez. The Northwestern parents are now facing two charges, each with a twenty-year maximum prison sentence.

Gabby Birenbaum, Campus Editor

Federal prosecutors unveiled new charges today against Northwestern parents Manuel and Elizabeth Henriquez, who are accused of participating in the college admission scheme.

The Atherton, California, residents have now been indicted on a charge of conspiracy to commit money laundering in addition to the charge of conspiracy to commit mail and wire fraud and honest services mail and wire fraud, which they were charged for in March. An arraignment date has not yet been scheduled, according to the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the District of Massachusetts.

The new charge, which carries a maximum of 20 years and hefty fines, raises the stakes of the Henriquez case. Though 13 of the parents charged have agreed to enter a guilty plea, the Henriquezes have not yet entered a plea or indicated which way they will plea.

The Henriquezes last appeared in court on April 3 to hear the charges against them and the conditions of their release, which included limited travel and surrendering firearms.

Of the 33 parents charged in the case, 16 of them, including the Henriquezes, are now facing the additional charge, which will likely impact the Henriquezes’ plea.

The original mail and wire fraud charge carries a maximum of 20 years in prison, three years of supervised release and a fine of $250,000 or twice the gross gain or loss, whichever is larger. The new money laundering charge carries the same maximum sentence and release terms, but a larger fine of $500,000 or twice the value of the property involved in the money laundering.

The Henriquezes, along with 50 others, were charged last month with participating in a college admissions scheme that facilitated the admission of wealthy children to elite schools. The Henriquezes were accused of paying to facilitate a phony proctor

The Henriquez daughter is still listed as a student at Northwestern. A University spokesperson again declined to say on Tuesday whether NU has opened an investigation.

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