Former exam administrator pleads guilty in college scam

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A former college entrance exam administrator pleaded guilty Friday to taking bribes to help wealthy parents rig their kids’ test scores as part of a college admissions bribery scheme.

Niki Williams, 46, a former employee of the Houston Independent School District, is among about 40 people who have admitted to charges in the case that exposed a scheme to get undeserving teens into college with fake athletic credentials or manipulated test scores.

Prosecutors say Williams, who administered the college entrance exams at the public high school where she worked, took money from the admissions consultant at the center of the scheme in exchange for allowing someone else to take exams in place of the children of Singer’s clients or correct their answers.

Williams “regrets the harm she has caused her school, her students and the companies that trusted her,” he lawyer said in an email.

“While she has struggled through this difficult process, she is eager to move beyond it and start the next chapter of her life,” attorney Eric Tennen said.

Rick Singer, the admissions consultant, and Mark Riddell, who secretly took the exams for the students, have also pleaded guilty.

Williams pleaded guilty to one count of conspiracy to commit wire fraud and mail fraud and honest services wire fraud and mail fraud before a Boston federal court judge held via video because of the coronavirus pandemic.

Williams is scheduled to be sentenced Dec. 21.