A Yale soccer coach caught in a sting: How the FBI broke open the sweeping college admission scandal
By Joey Garrison, USA Today
Inside a Boston hotel room April 12, 2018, Yale Women's Soccer Coach Rudy Meredith allegedly met with a father from California who was ready to pay to get his daughter into the Ivy League school.
A deal was reached, federal prosecutors said.
Meredith, 51, allegedly agreed to designate the young woman, identified in court documents as "Applicant 2," as a Yale soccer player in exchange for $450,000. Prosecutors said he accepted an initial payment of $2,000 in cash at the hotel and later received $4,000 through a wire transfer into a Connecticut bank account.
What Meredith, who resigned as the team's coach in November after 24 years, did not know was that the FBI was secretly recording the meeting.
The father was a tipster to the Justice Department wearing a wire, according to media reports.
According to the Justice Department, the April 18 wire payment was from a Boston bank account under the control of FBI agents as well.
The FBI had its eyes on Meredith after federal authorities were tipped to him while pursuing a separate securities fraud case, according to The Wall Street Journal and The Boston Globe, which shed light on how the scheme unraveled.
The scam was discovered by accident. A financial executive wanting leniency in the securities case told federal authorities that Meredith sought a bribe to get his daughter into Yale, The Wall Street Journal reported, citing "people familiar with the investigation."
After the Boston sting operation, Meredith cooperated with federal authorities, the report said, making him the first – and key – domino in the largest college admissions scandal in U.S. history.
Meredith is one of 50 people, including 33 affluent parents and nine collegiate athletic coaches, charged with crimes in the elaborate cheating and bribery conspiracy. The parent who met with Meredith in the Boston hotel room is not among those charged. Meredith was charged with one count of conspiracy to commit wire fraud and honest services wire fraud and a second count of honest services wire fraud.
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