Home | News | Bono's partner charged in college fraud scandal after paying $250K to USC World | Bono's partner charged in college fraud scandal after paying $250K to USC
❰❰ Trump grounds Boeing 737 Max planes effective immediately after crash
Last words of ex-air hostess in harrowing 999 call as she suffered fatal heart attack ❱❱

Bono's partner charged in college fraud scandal after paying $250K to USC



Bono's partner in socially responsible investment firm is charged in college fraud scandal after paying $250K to USC, hiring a man to take his son's exam and photoshopping boy into football photos

  • Bill McGlashan, who is a founder and managing partner at TPG Growth, allegedly paid over $250,000 to get his son into University of  Southern California
  • He gave $50,000 to an athletic director at the college prior to his son's application and an additional $200,000 after he was admitted
  • In addition, documents state he paid an individual to take part of his son's ACT exam in West Hollywood while he and the boy were home in San Francisco 
  • McGlashan would later, without his son's awareness, assist to photoshop images that showed the boy as a punter, despite never playing football, it is claimed
  • 'Pretty funny. The way the world works these days is unbelievable,' said McGlashan in one call that was recorded and transcribed by prosecutors  
  • He founded the $2 billion Rise Fund with Bono, an investment firm that focuses on social responsibility and ethical investing
  • TPG owns a majority stake in Creative Artists Agency, where McGlashan serves as a director 

By Chris Spargo For Dailymail.com

Published: 15:42 EDT, 13 March 2019 | Updated: 17:13 EDT, 13 March 2019

18

View
comments

A millionaire investor who preaches about social responsibility and ethical investing alongside his friend and business partner Bono was arrested on Tuesday in Operation Varsity Blues. 

Bill McGlashan, who is a founder and managing partner at TPG Growth, was among the 50 parents and coaches who were picked up by federal agents across he country.

He founded the $2 billion Rise Fund and in his role at TPG has made lucrative investments in companies like Uber, Spotify and Airbnb. 

TPG owns a majority stake in Creative Artists Agency, where McGlashan serves as a director 

McGlashan's moral compass led him astray however back in 2017 when he decided to bribe a college official, pay an individual to complete a standardized college entrance exam for his son and even photoshopped an image to make it seem as though his son played football, it is claimed.

And while he was working to take away a spot in the school from more deserving student, McGlashan was recorded saying: 'Pretty funny. The way the world works these days is unbelievable.'

This 'pretty funny' $250,000 production of lies and deceit was all to get his son into the University of Southern California, claim prosecutors.

One, but they are not the same: Bill McGlashan (above with Bono in January at Davos to promote their socially responsible investment firm), who is a founder and managing partner at TPG Growth, paid over $250,000 to get his son into University of Southern California, prosecutors claim
One, but they are not the same: Bill McGlashan (above with Bono in January at Davos to promote their socially responsible investment firm), who is a founder and managing partner at TPG Growth, paid over $250,000 to get his son into University of Southern California, prosecutors claim

One, but they are not the same: Bill McGlashan (above with Bono in January at Davos to promote their socially responsible investment firm), who is a founder and managing partner at TPG Growth, paid over $250,000 to get his son into University of Southern California, prosecutors claim

[embedded content]

The millionaire, who lives in San Francisco, 'participated in both the college entrance exam cheating scheme and the college recruitment scheme, including by conspiring to bribe Donna Heinel, the senior associate athletic director at the University of Southern California, to facilitate his son’s admission to USC as a recruited athlete. ' 

The first step was the $50,000 donation to mastermind William Rick Singer's Key Foundation 'charity.' 

Federal documents state that shortly after, McGlashan and his son flew from San Francisco to Los Angeles so the teenager could take his test at the West Hollywood facility where Felicity Huffman and William H Macy's daughter took her test. 

The two flew home later that day, which is how they got caught in the scheme.

'The form showed that McGlashan's s son took the English and math sections on December 9, 2017, and the reading, writing and science sections on December 10, 2017, all at the West Hollywood Test Center,' reads the complaint. 

'Accordingly, while the records Dvorskiy provided to ACT, Inc. showed McGlashan’s son taking the exam in Los Angeles on December 10, 2017, cell site records indicate that McGlashan’s son was hundreds of miles away, in Marin County, at that time.'

Next, McGlashan allegedly began to doctor photos that would make it seem as though his son was a football player, as that is how the boy would be gaining admission.

Once in, the boy hoped to enroll Jimmy Iovine in Andre Young Academy, a specialty program in arts, technology and business.

There would be an additional payment of $200,000 due to USC after he was accepted in the program.

The most shocking part of all was the insistence that McGlashan's son never discover what his father was doing to gain him admission.

'So he doesn’t have to know how he got in. Is that the case?' he asked at one point in a recorded call transcribed in the documents.

'What I would say to him, if you want to have that discussion now with [your son] there, that we have friends in athletics, they are going to help us, because [he] is an athlete, and they’re going to help us,' responded Singer.

McGlashan responded: 'But I can’t say that in front of [my son], ’cause he knows he’s not.'

It is later decided that they will describe the boy as an 'athlete kind of guy.' 

Checking: 'So he doesn’t have to know how he got in. Is that the case?' he asked at one point in a recorded call transcribed in the documents
Checking: 'So he doesn’t have to know how he got in. Is that the case?' he asked at one point in a recorded call transcribed in the documents

Checking: 'So he doesn’t have to know how he got in. Is that the case?' he asked at one point in a recorded call transcribed in the documents

Photo shopping: It is later decided that they will describe the boy as an 'athlete kind of guy'
Photo shopping: It is later decided that they will describe the boy as an 'athlete kind of guy'

Photo shopping: It is later decided that they will describe the boy as an 'athlete kind of guy'

Next the men photoshopped him as a kicker, with McGlashan joking that the boy did have strong legs.

Federal documents also reveal that McGlashan was so pleased with how things went the first time, he has wanted to utilize the process again with his younger children. 

'One other, just family question, with [my younger son] now entering his sophomore year, and sort of, the process is beginning, we have him on time and a half,' said McGlashan on one call. 

'I told [my spouse] yesterday, and [my daughter] by the way, who is the, who I think is the one who needs the most time, has no extra time currently. And [my spouse] is talking to the doctor that assessed them, to get her to ask, to request time for [my daughter]. I told her she should be requesting double time for all of them.' 

Just a month before the arrest he was extolling the virtues of his socially conscious firm in Davos alongside Bono.  

The Rise Fund is how McGlashan came to know Bono and fellow executive Laurene Powell Jobs. 

He was named to the Vanity fair New Establishment List just last year, with a fawning write-up that heralded the success of his company.

It also noted that there were no plans for an initial public offering, a decision many in the company were no doubt relieved about given the impact that the arrests of some CEOs had on stock prices. 

He is now on 'indefinite administrative leave effective immediately' the company said in a statement, referring to his roles at both TPG Growth and The Rise Fund.

Bono's reps did not return a request for comment. 

THE FULL LIST OF PEOPLE CHARGED WITH COLLEGE ADMITTANCE SCAM

THE STARS

Lori Loughlin and Mossimo Giannulli spent $500,000 getting their two daughters into USC, according to prosecutors
Lori Loughlin and Mossimo Giannulli spent $500,000 getting their two daughters into USC, according to prosecutors

Lori Loughlin and Mossimo Giannulli spent $500,000 getting their two daughters into USC, according to prosecutors 

Lori Loughlin and Mossimo Giannulli

Actress Loughlin and her fashion designer husband Mossimo are among the three most well known names on the list. They have two daughters, Olivia, 20, Isabella, 19, and Mossimo also has a son from a previous relationship. It is not clear which of their children is in college.  

Olivia is a YouTube star who has amounted millions of fans online but she is also enrolled at USC, as is their 19-year-old daughter Isabella. 

They allegedly paid $50,000 to get their oldest daughter into USC under the guise that she was a crew coxswain when in fact she does not row crew. 

Felicity Huffman is accused of paying a $15,000 bribe to get her oldest daughter Sofia into USC
Felicity Huffman is accused of paying a $15,000 bribe to get her oldest daughter Sofia into USC

Felicity Huffman is accused of paying a $15,000 bribe to get her oldest daughter Sofia into USC 

Felicity Huffman 

Huffman is best known for her role on Desperate Housewives. 

She is married to fellow actor William H. Macy but he has not been charged in the indictment. 

The pair have two daughters, Sofia, 18, and Georgia, 16.

Huffman is accused of paying $15,000  to have her daughter's exam proctored by Mark Riddell. 

Riddell was described by authorities as 'just a really smart guy' who would either sit tests for students, change their answers afterwards or help them actively while they took it in one of two test centers that was 'controlled' by the scheme's 'mastermind' Rick Singer. 

Huffman allegedly used the scheme in December 2017 but the indictment does not specify how Riddell allegedly helped her daughter. 

She considered using it for her youngest daughter, Georgia, but decided in the end that she did not need to, according to authorities.  

THE COLLEGE PROFESSORS, COACHES AND 'MASTERMIND'

William Rick Singer, the 'mastermind' 

Rick Singer ran The Key, a college preparation business
Rick Singer ran The Key, a college preparation business

Rick Singer ran The Key, a college preparation business 

Singer is accused of leading the scam. 

He led a college counseling program and, according to prosecutors, also ran a fake charity through which he funneled bribes.

The scam worked in two ways; he would have people come into the exam to correct students' answers and he also then bribed sports coaches to offer them scholarships, in some cases for sports they did not even play. 

Singer cooperated with authorities as part of the investigation and continued taking bribes after he had been contacted by police. 

Some of his conversations were recorded by police who obtained a wire tap to listen in. He is facing a maximum of 65 years behind bars and has pleaded guilty on all counts he was charged with. 

It remains unclear if he will be given leniency given his cooperation. 

Rudolph Meredith 

Meredith is a women's soccer coach at Yale. In his bio on the college's website, he is heralded as the 'winningest' coach, with 24 seasons under his belt. 

Mark Riddell 

Riddell is the director of IMG Academy , a college entrance exam preparation company.  

Rudolph Meredith, the women's soccer coach at Yale
Rudolph Meredith, the women's soccer coach at Yale
Mark Riddell, the director of IMG Academy
Mark Riddell, the director of IMG Academy

Rudolph Meredith, the women's soccer coach at Yale (left) and Mark Riddell, director of IMG Academy 

John Vandemoer 

Vandemoer is the head sailing coach at Stanford.   

Gordon Ernst 

Ernst is the head of women's tennis at the University of Rhode Island. 

He taught at Georgetown in the past and worked as a personal tennis coach for Michelle Obama and her daughters, Sasha and Malia, while they were in the White House. 

John Vandemoer is the head sailing coach at Stanford
John Vandemoer is the head sailing coach at Stanford
Gordie Ernst was Michelle Obama's private tennis coach when she was First Lady. He is now the head of women's tennis at the University of Rhode Island.
Gordie Ernst was Michelle Obama's private tennis coach when she was First Lady. He is now the head of women's tennis at the University of Rhode Island.

John Vandemoer (left) is the head sailing coach at Stanford. Gordie Ernst was Michelle Obama's private tennis coach when she was First Lady. He is now the head of women's tennis at the University of Rhode Island.

Houmayoun Zadeg

Homa H Zadeh is a professor at USC. He is the Associate Professor and Director, Advanced Education Program in Periodontology. 

Michael Center

Center is the men's soccer coach at the University of Texas.  

Homa H. Zadeh, a profesor at USC
Homa H. Zadeh, a profesor at USC
Michael Center, the men's soccer coach at University of Texas
Michael Center, the men's soccer coach at University of Texas

Homa H Zadeh (left) is a professor at USC. Michael Center (right) is the men's soccer coach at the University of Texas.

Donna Heinel 

Heinel is the senior women's athletics director at USC. She is alleged to have accepted a $50,000 from Lori Loughlin and her husband, among others, for admitting fraudulent tests.

Laura Janke 

Janke is a former assistant soccer coach at USC. She allegedly took payment from Loughlin and her husband for their youngest daughter. 

Donna Heinel is the senior athletic director at USC
Donna Heinel is the senior athletic director at USC
Laura Janke is a former assistant soccer coach at USC
Laura Janke is a former assistant soccer coach at USC

Donna Heinel (left) is the senior athletic director at USC. Laura Janke (right) is a former assistant soccer coach

Ali Khosroshahin 

Khosroshahin is the head women's soccer coach at USC. 

Jovan Vavic

Vavic is the head coach for the men's and women's water polo teams at USC. 

Ali Khosroshahin is the head women's soccer coach at USC
Ali Khosroshahin is the head women's soccer coach at USC
Jovan Vavic is the head of men's and women's water polo teams at USC
Jovan Vavic is the head of men's and women's water polo teams at USC

Ali Khosroshahin (left) is the head of women's soccer at USC and Jovan Vavic is the head of the men's and women's water polo teams at USC 

Igor Dvorskiy

Dvorskiy is the president of the West Hollywood College Preparatory School and he worked at the West Hollywood Test Center where he turned a blind eye as the cheating happened for $10,000 at a time. 

Niki Williams 

Williams worked as a test administrator at one of the test centers Singer told parents he 'controlled'. She was a teaching assistant for Jack Yates High School in Houston, Texas. 

PARENTS 

Bill McGlashan  

McGlashan is a prolific private equity investor who is the founder and managing partner of the firm TPG Growth. 

He is also at the helm of The Rise Fund, a social impact fund he launched with Bono. 

Gregory and Marcia Abbott 

New York couple Gregory and Marcia Abbott, 68 and 59, were also named. 

Gregory Abbott is the founder and chairman of International Dispensing Corp., a successful food and beverage packaging company. 

The couple, who have homes in New York City and Aspen, Colorado, allegedly paid a total of $125,000 to have someone take the ACT and SAT subject tests for their daughter so she could gain entrance to Duke University. 

Bill McGlashan
Bill McGlashan
Gregory Abbott
Gregory Abbott

Bill McGlashan and Gregory Abbott are pictured

Gamal Abdelaziz

Abdelaziz stepped down as president and COO of Wynn Resorts in 2016.

He is accused of bribing Donna Heinel, the senior women's athletics director at USC, to recruit his daughter for the basketball team in 2017. 

According to court documents, his daughter played high school basketball but was not gifted enough to get recruited as an athlete so he arranged for her to be one.  

He then made a $300,000 'donation' to the fictitious charity run by 'ringleader' Rick Singer and then made monthly $20,000 payments directly to Heinel. 

His daughter got into the college but never joined the basketball team, according to the documents. 

In a phone call with the fixer, they said: 'I’m not going to tell the IRS anything about the fact that your $300,000 was paid to Donna-- Donna Heinel at USC to get [your daughter] into school even though she wasn’t a legitimate basketball player at that level.'   

Jane Buckingham 

Buckingham is the owner of the now defunct market research firm, Youth Intelligence.  She sold the company in 2003. 

She is charged in the scheme for allegedly paying $50,000 to have someone else take her son's ACT exam in July 2018 because he had tonsilitis. 

Buckingham sent a handwriting sample for her son to a test taker and had him take a fake exam at home so he wouldn't know about the fraud, court documents indicate. 

Gamal Abdelaziz
Gamal Abdelaziz
Jane Buckingham
Jane Buckingham

Gamal Abdelaziz, the president and COO of Wynn Resorts (left) and Jane Buckingham, the owner of the now defunct market research firm Youth Intelligence 

Gordon Caplan

Caplan is a financial attorney and partner at the firm Willkie Farr & Gallagher in New York City. He lives in Connecticut.

He allegedly paid $75,000 to have Singer arrange a proctor to corrected his daughter's answers after she took the ACT in November or December 2018. 

Robert Flaxman 

Flaxman is the CEO, Co-founder, Crown Realty & Development, Inc, a real estate company based in Orange County. 

Gordon Caplan
Gordon Caplan
Robert Flaxman
Robert Flaxman

Gordon Caplan (left) is a financial attorney and partner at the firm Willkie Farr & Gallagher in New York City. Robert Flaxman (right) is the CEO, Co-founder, Crown Realty & Development

Agustin Huneeus 

Vineyard owner Huneeus owns a range of wines that are produced in Napa Valley. 

He allegedly participated in both the college entrance exam cheating scheme and the college recruitment scheme for his daughter in 2017 and 2018 by conspiring to bribe Heinel and Jovan Vavic, the USC water polo coach, to facilitate his daughter’s admission to USC as a purported water polo recruit, according to the indictment. 

Elisabeth Kimmel
Elisabeth Kimmel
Agustin Huneeus
Agustin Huneeus

Elisabeth Kimmel is the former president of Midwest Television. She sold it in 2017 for $325million. Agustin Huneeus, whose family owns vineyards in Napa Valley, was also charged 

Elisabeth Kimmel 

Lis and Manuel Henriquez
Lis and Manuel Henriquez

Lis and Manuel Henriquez 

Kimmel, of Las Vegas, Nevada, is the former president of Midwest Television. She sold it in 2017 for $325million. 

She allegedly used the scheme to get her daughter into Georgetown and her son into USC by pretending the former was a tennis player and the latter was a pole vaulter. 

Kimmel ultimately facilitated $475,000 in payments to KWF, according to the affidavit.  

Toby MacFarlane 

MacFarlane and his wife Christy are well known on the San Diego social and charity circuit. 

He sits on the board of multiple companies and the family has their own trust but it is not exactly clear what he does. 

Elizabeth and Manuel Henriquez

Marjorie Klapper 

Diane and Todd Blake 

I-Hsin "Joey" Chen  

Amy and Gregory Colburn 

Marci Palatella 

Peter Jan Sartorio 

Stephen Semprevivo 

Devin Sloane 

John Wilson

Robert Zangrillo 

Steven Masera 

William Ferguson 

Martin Fox

Jorge Salcedo 

Bruce and Davina Isackson 

Mikaela Sanford

David Sidoo

Michelle Janavs   

Douglas Hodge 

Advertisement

Article Tags

    No tags for this article

About the author

What's next