New allegations against Vancouver businessman David Sidoo in admissions case

Oct 24 2019, 5:07 pm

New allegations against Vancouver businessman and philanthropist David Sidoo and his connection to the US college admissions scandal have come to light in a recently published US Court indictment.

Sidoo was one of the dozens of people named in the massive admissions scandal that also involves Hollywood actresses Lori Loughlin and Felicity Huffman, who was recently sentenced to 14 days in prison.

Sidoo allegedly made a deal worth over US$200,000 with William “Rick” Singer —  a college consultant at the centre of organizing the fake admissions. The deal arranged to have Mark Riddell — a director of college entrance preparation at a private preparatory school and sports academy in Florida — take the SATs and other high-level entrance examinations for Sidoo’s two sons.

The latest indictment goes into greater detail about Sidoo’s involvement in the scandal and alleges that in 2011, Sidoo provided Singer with copies of his older son Dylan’s driver’s license and student identification to create a false ID for Riddell.

Sidoo also paid Singer to have Riddell take a Canadian high school exam for Dylan and the SAT for his younger son, Jordan in 2012.

Singer drafted a falsified college application essay in 2013, stating Jordan was involved with an organization that worked to combat violence among gangs in the LA area.

“The essay falsely claimed that Sidoo’s younger son had been held up at gunpoint by gang members in Los Angeles,” reads the indictment.

When Sidoo received the essay from Singer via email, he wrote back with minor changes asking, “‘can we lessen the interaction with the gangs. Guns…? that’s scary stuff. Your call you know what they look for.'”

In 2016, Riddell wired US$520 to China to pay for fraudulent drivers’ licenses that he intended to use to pose as Dylan to take the Graduate Management Admission Test (GMAT).

The fake IDs were “not of high quality” and Riddell decided not to take the exam for Dylan.

In 2018, Singer called Sidoo and they discussed Dylan’s intention to apply for business school.

In March, Sidoo was charged and pleaded not guilty in a Boston court.

Sidoo is not the only parent from BC involved in the scandal. In September, 48-year-old Xiaoning Sui, from Surrey was arrested in Spain. Sui was charged with one count of conspiracy to commit mail fraud and honest services mail fraud.

Sui allegedly made a deal with Singer to pay $400,000 in order to get her son admitted into UCLA as a soccer recruit.